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Civ 5 Will Let You Import and Convert Civ 4 Maps

Soulskill posted more than 4 years ago | from the backward-compatibility dept.

PC Games (Games) 142

bbretterson writes "From an interview Bitmob conducted with Civilization 5 Lead Designer Jon Shafer: 'You can import Civ 4 maps into the world builder and convert them into Civ 5 maps, including all the units and cities and stuff on it — the conversion process will just do that for you automatically. We're hoping that the first week Civ 5 is out, people will use that function and port all of the Civ 4 stuff over to Civ 5, so everything will be out there already.'"

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THIS IS NOT A PROBLEM !! (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32688434)

This is a good thing for all concerned !!

YO DAWG (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32690990)

YO DAWG, we heard you like things that stand the test of time, so we made a game that could stand the test of time, whilst you built a civilization to stand the test of time.

Wow (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32688464)

Wow, this new game must offer a lot compared to the old game..

Re:Wow (1)

conspirator57 (1123519) | more than 4 years ago | (#32691174)

like the same crappy AI as the last one. and the one before that. ad nauseam.

i quit Civ after realizing that it was impossible to win using diplomacy, culture, or intimidation. The only thing that works is military expansion and the space race.

Re:Wow (2, Informative)

atrain728 (1835698) | more than 4 years ago | (#32691326)

Guess you didn't play Civ 4 then. That's too bad.

You're right though... there is no "intimidation" victory mode. Sounds like a hybrid between conquest and diplomacy, which is the way most games go.

Re:Wow (1)

conspirator57 (1123519) | more than 4 years ago | (#32692418)

i did play civ 4. it seemed identical to civ 3 but with slightly better graphics. in fact the only reason i bought it was on the hope that the AI was better. i was disappointed.

Re:Wow (2, Insightful)

atrain728 (1835698) | more than 4 years ago | (#32692900)

i did play civ 4. it seemed identical to civ 3 but with slightly better graphics. in fact the only reason i bought it was on the hope that the AI was better. i was disappointed.

You really missed out on Civ 4 then. It wasn't at all "Civ 3 with slightly better graphics." I mean, first off, the graphics were alot more than "slightly" better. Second, it introduced a slew of game mechanics, games inside of the game, customizations. To say that it built upon Civ 3 would be an understatement.

On the other hand, Civ 3 really was Civ 2 with slightly better graphics. The same cannot be said for Civ 4. Not at all. I played both Civ 2 and Civ 3 extensively, and I can't describe how much I had to reprogram my way of thinking about the game to be successful on any of the higher difficulty levels. Diplomacy is crucial as is prior planning. Civ2&3 just meant pumping out the best units you could achieve and sending them into battle. Very linear. If you played that game in Civ4, you didn't play very long.

In fact, I can remember reading that exact sentiment in several strategy guides. "If you play this game like Civ2/Civ3, you will lose."

I'm not sure what you would have wanted from the AI. Yeah, difficulty level often meant a reduction in bonuses for the player while giving other advantages to the AI, but that's pretty similar to just about every game ever. However, I thought the AI was pretty impressive. AI leaders frequently gathered up massive armies and "sprung" attacks on you, and even cooperated with one another. Taking out strategic resources was commonplace, as was using tactics to weaken your stack.

Furthermore, combat wasn't the only place that AI was influencing the game. You'd frequently see other leaders brokering technologies and attempting cultural victory (all based on the leaders personality, of course.)

The more I think about it, the more I'm convinced that with a comment like that, you really didn't play the game.

Re:Wow (1)

Binestar (28861) | more than 4 years ago | (#32691408)

Culture is an easy enough way to win, you just need to plan for it by using a cultural civ. Diplomacy is possible, but you're not going to get a Diplo victory unless you're willing to use military to get it. Which victory type are you thinking is an intimidation victory?

Re:Wow (1)

conspirator57 (1123519) | more than 4 years ago | (#32692394)

by intimidation i meant diplomacy mostly. i surrounded an ancillary enemy city with both culture and units and the AI still refused to give it to me. my military easily took the city the next turn with no losses. at that point i stopped using diplomacy because there was no point.

Re:Wow (1)

ultranova (717540) | more than 4 years ago | (#32694956)

i quit Civ after realizing that it was impossible to win using diplomacy, culture, or intimidation.

I won using culture. Granted, I only managed it on lower difficulty settings, but still...

Square to hexagon conversion (5, Interesting)

Maian (887886) | more than 4 years ago | (#32688470)

Civ 4 map plots are squares. Civ 5 are hexagons. I don't see an easy conversion process that won't produce real not-just-semantic map differences (e.g. how to convert diagonal waterways where in a 4x4, one diagonal is water and the other diagonal is land, and ships can travel through the water diagonal?)

Re:Square to hexagon conversion (1, Interesting)

Z00L00K (682162) | more than 4 years ago | (#32688502)

What probably would be more interesting is ability to create, convert and design your own custom units.

Re:Square to hexagon conversion (4, Interesting)

sjwt (161428) | more than 4 years ago | (#32688566)

Try looking at how the game Elemental, War of Magic [elementalgame.com] development is going, that might be more your cup of tea.

Its been developed with the Mod tools, and they are realeasing them with it, its currntly in a true Beta, you know the kind where one can post feedback, and sugest changes that are more then cosmetic or extreamly minor.

Re:Square to hexagon conversion (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32688678)

Every previous Civ game has allowed modding pretty much every detail including units, what makes you think this one would be different?

Re:Square to hexagon conversion (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32691212)

I'm pretty sure he meant designing custom units from the vanilla game, like in Alpha Centauri. Civ4's promotions system is cool in its own way, but more control over what units are like right off of the production line would be better.

Re:Square to hexagon conversion (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32691060)

Like every Civ game ever has already offered?

Re:Square to hexagon conversion (1)

Z00L00K (682162) | more than 4 years ago | (#32693284)

Previous games did only offer that in a very rough form - you were somewhat limited to what you really could do and not.

Re:Square to hexagon conversion (5, Interesting)

Shrike82 (1471633) | more than 4 years ago | (#32688516)

Yeah this was my first question too. Nothing in the article about it, but it hesitantly alludes to the fact that the only things confirmed to "carry over" will be cities and units. So this could very well be an approximation rather than a conversion. Cities roughly in the same place, land masses roughly the same size and shape, rivers running the same general course and touching the same cities etc.

Units will be interesting though. If you import a map with huge unit stacks they'll have to be spread out to conform to the new one-unit-per-hex requirement. Suddenly a stack of doom will become a huge traffic jam across your civilisation!

Re:Square to hexagon conversion (1)

zwei2stein (782480) | more than 4 years ago | (#32688880)

Even with just cities, simila implications are still valid because there are going to be quite a few mechanic changes:

Culture is said to be working differetly -> new borders?
Religion is going to be removed -> what about religion buildings and political ties?
What about general building not found in new versions?

Somehow, I just can not get excited about this feature at all: Why would I want to play old Civ4 map in brand new Civ 5 instead of starting new game?

Re:Square to hexagon conversion (1)

sortius_nod (1080919) | more than 4 years ago | (#32689310)

That's what I was thinking myself. Why not just start again... it is, after all, a new game...

Re:Square to hexagon conversion (1)

wisdom_brewing (557753) | more than 4 years ago | (#32689420)

Do you think that maybe, MAYBE they're going to include a "compatibility" or "classic" mode alongside the new rules...

Re:Square to hexagon conversion (1)

ultranova (717540) | more than 4 years ago | (#32695022)

Do you think that maybe, MAYBE they're going to include a "compatibility" or "classic" mode alongside the new rules...

If you have Civ 4 savegames, the chances are you have Civ 4. If you have Civ 4, why would you want to play Civ 5 modded to work like Civ 4 instead of just playing Civ 4?

Re:Square to hexagon conversion (1)

English French Man (1220122) | more than 4 years ago | (#32689822)

Somehow, I just can not get excited about this feature at all: Why would I want to play old Civ4 map in brand new Civ 5 instead of starting new game?

Hopefully we can ignore this feature and never talk about it. It's not that bad, I guess, some people may be interested.

Re:Square to hexagon conversion (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32688520)

From a computational chemist point of view, who uses both square and hexagonal lattice all the time, it isn't that difficult/strange actually. Thanks to the fact that periodic boundaries are used, it will just be a 'simple' conversion. The main issue one might encounter though is the fact that you'll go from 8 neighbours to 6 neighbours (if I am not mistaken the diagonals are also counted as neighbours in Civ4..., otherwise it's 4 to 6).
Plus I believe they actually wanted to limit the diagonal travelling, so it makes sense to prevent the diagonal 4x4, instead of encouraging it.
No, I am not worried about the conversion of the lattice/map. What I am worried about is the fact that in Civ5 it won't be possible to have more than 1! army per tile. So what will happen to the other dozen armies that were on the converted tile?

Re:Square to hexagon conversion (1)

English French Man (1220122) | more than 4 years ago | (#32689876)

I think the maps are supposed to be bigger, so one square can be converted to 6 or 8 hexes, depending on orientation... Piles of more than 8 armies would have to expand farther away from the initial part.

Re:Square to hexagon conversion (2, Interesting)

ivucica (1001089) | more than 4 years ago | (#32688544)

Hexagons? What are they doing to Civ? :D

I wouldn't be opposed to Civ5 having both hexagon and square modes. That would solve the conversion problem, too.

Re:Square to hexagon conversion (4, Funny)

dingen (958134) | more than 4 years ago | (#32688686)

Hexagons? What are they doing to Civ? :D

Heh, a true fan I see, learning of new features through a comment on Slashdot, months after the developer released this info to the world.

Re:Square to hexagon conversion (1)

Lars T. (470328) | more than 4 years ago | (#32694574)

Hexagons? What are they doing to Civ? :D

Heh, a true fan I see, learning of new features through a comment on Slashdot, months after the developer released this info to the world.

And a true Slashdotter - as we discussed it several times since then.

Re:Square to hexagon conversion (5, Funny)

Ed Avis (5917) | more than 4 years ago | (#32688806)

The map for Civ 6 is going to be based on Penrose tiles.

Re:Square to hexagon conversion (1)

English French Man (1220122) | more than 4 years ago | (#32689956)

Where can I pre-order?

Re:Square to hexagon conversion (1)

blind biker (1066130) | more than 4 years ago | (#32694958)

Modded funny, but it actually makes sense, if Sid & Co. ever decides to model the sphericity of the globe - in such a case, some sort of Penrose tiling would make a lot of sense.

Re:Square to hexagon conversion (1)

ultranova (717540) | more than 4 years ago | (#32695200)

The map for Civ 6 is going to be based on Penrose tiles.

Or prevent the "the" from it, allow multiple maps in the same game, and let me colonize Moon!

Seriously: Undersea cities, orbital habitats, space-based weaponry, Moon colonies... Call to Power tried some of this stuff, so why not expand the scope of the game to hypothethical future worlds? It would be a lot of fun being able to retreat to the moons of Jupiter and prepare to retake the Inner System while they are sabotaging your attempts to extract hydrogen fuel from the gas giants for your interstellar spacecraft... Or establish a colony on Mars, only to have them rebel and fight for independence. Or a hundred other sci-fi scenarios.

It's about time for Civilization to take a real leap forward.

Re:Square to hexagon conversion (4, Insightful)

Tridus (79566) | more than 4 years ago | (#32688908)

Making it so that moving in every direction uses the same amount of movement to go the same distance. Unlike the diagonals on squire tiles in Civ 4.

The real question is why hexes weren't in use all along.

Re:Square to hexagon conversion (1)

ShakaUVM (157947) | more than 4 years ago | (#32689358)

>>The real question is why hexes weren't in use all along.

Because hexes look ugly?

Re:Square to hexagon conversion (-1, Troll)

BobMcD (601576) | more than 4 years ago | (#32689558)

>>The real question is why hexes weren't in use all along.

Because hexes look ugly?

True, but as your birth proves, even ugly things see some use from time to time...

Re:Square to hexagon conversion (1)

AtariEric (571910) | more than 4 years ago | (#32694196)

Clearly, ugly is in the eye of the beholder - I think hexes look pretty.

Re:Square to hexagon conversion (1)

Bratmon (1649855) | more than 4 years ago | (#32690764)

The real question is why hexes weren't in use all along.

Could you have program an effective hex-based map (taxes, military, etc.) for the computers in 1991?

Re:Square to hexagon conversion (3, Informative)

Minwee (522556) | more than 4 years ago | (#32692132)

Could you have program an effective hex-based map (taxes, military, etc.) for the computers in 1991?

No, you're right. The very concept of using a hexagonal grid would have been far beyond the computing power of any such system. To even begin to display a hex map like this requires at least a 3.0 GHz, quad-core processor and a DX11 video card with a minimum of 512M DDR3.

Or, of course, you could have just played Sword of Aragon [mobygames.com] , Battle Isle [mobygames.com] , Conflict: Middle East [mobygames.com] , or just about any other authentic computer wargame from that era. You could even have played Advanced Squad Leader back in 1985, which despite being a board game still has more lines of code in the rulebooks than most computer games.

Hexes are nothing new, and they're not complicated.

Re:Square to hexagon conversion (1)

Chowderbags (847952) | more than 4 years ago | (#32691292)

Probably because a 2d array of squares is easier and quicker to code (and faster to process). Inertia from there.

Re:Square to hexagon conversion (5, Informative)

gravos (912628) | more than 4 years ago | (#32688610)

Civ 4 map plots are squares. Civ 5 are hexagons. I don't see an easy conversion process that won't produce real not-just-semantic map differences

Someone at reddit posted a diagram of how to do this fairly easily: http://i.imgur.com/lpJRd.png [imgur.com]

The only problem is with moving resources out of city limits, etc... things which may or may not be practical problems.

Re:Square to hexagon conversion (2, Interesting)

Thiez (1281866) | more than 4 years ago | (#32688630)

Wow, that diagram was actually really informative. In hindsight it's amazingly obvious :D

Re:Square to hexagon conversion (1)

atrain728 (1835698) | more than 4 years ago | (#32688720)

Very informative!

Hard to know how resources are allocated to a city in the new Civ, but at very least we know that's going to change. Moving resources outside of the city limits may be an issue - but then again, it may not.

My guess is that a city will be able to control tiles up to two tiles away (the hexagon system makes this pretty easy to define) as opposed to the "fat cross" system of before. Based on that image, if you place a city dead center and imagine it's "fat cross" as it would have been in Civ 4, only the four corner tiles are inaccessible. If we assume the above, the user "loses" the two tiles inward of the bottom corners upon conversion. However, assuming this, a city would have a maximum of 18 tiles in it's control (not including the city itself) rather than the 20 of Civ 4 - so it stands to reason that it'd have to lose two from somewhere in the conversion, regardless.

However, like I said, it's been widely publicized that the method by which a city and a civilization gain resources is very different. More active resources cause territory to increase faster in their direction, so the shape of a city's purchase may be different altogether. Personally, I can't wait to find out!

Re:Square to hexagon conversion (3, Interesting)

Yvanhoe (564877) | more than 4 years ago | (#32688724)

In Civ4 going from (0,0) to (1,1) was possible through a diagonal move. In your conversion, this becomes impossible. This can have real importance in the game. A diagonal waterway in Civ4 will appear as non practicable in Civ5.

Going from a 8 neighborhood to a 6 neighborhood bears implications that are interesting but make conversion non ideal in most cases. If what you want is a nice map of Italy that looks about the same in Civ5, this is fine. But in the random map you loved so much in Civ4, some straits will disappear, some part of the sea will become lakes and just don't count on roads to be correctly converted.

Re:Square to hexagon conversion (1)

wjousts (1529427) | more than 4 years ago | (#32688912)

In Civ4 going from (0,0) to (1,1) was possible through a diagonal move. In your conversion, this becomes impossible. This can have real importance in the game. A diagonal waterway in Civ4 will appear as non practicable in Civ5. Going from a 8 neighborhood to a 6 neighborhood bears implications that are interesting but make conversion non ideal in most cases. If what you want is a nice map of Italy that looks about the same in Civ5, this is fine. But in the random map you loved so much in Civ4, some straits will disappear, some part of the sea will become lakes and just don't count on roads to be correctly converted.

Yes, it'll doubtless need some tweaking and it won't be exactly the same. But versus not converting it at all, it would presumably be easier than starting from scratch again.

Sheeze, just because it's not perfect, doesn't mean it's worthless. If you really want to play the old maps, stick to Civ IV.

Re:Square to hexagon conversion (3, Insightful)

Yvanhoe (564877) | more than 4 years ago | (#32689428)

I wholeheartedly agree with you but :

Sheeze, just because it's not perfect, doesn't mean it's worthless. If you really want to play the old maps, stick to Civ IV.

Sheeze, if you don't want to see people notpicking on algorithmic and graph theory questions, don't read slashdot ;-)

Re:Square to hexagon conversion (2, Interesting)

suomynonAyletamitlU (1618513) | more than 4 years ago | (#32693238)

If I were doing it, I'd "render" the terrain, then re-divide it into the new hexes , and infer the new tiles by the contents of the new grid, including cities, rivers, bonuses, etc. I don't know whether that would work cleanly, but it gets rid of that problem, at least; what used to be in 1,1 is still geographically close to 0,0, even if cell contents get moved, merged, or divided. Further, if a waterway runs between diagonal squares, it's likely that the corresponding hexes will also be contiguous.

I have no idea whether they're going to do something like that, though, and it might take a heck of a lot of tweaking before that method became viable.

Re:Square to hexagon conversion (1)

MattSausage (940218) | more than 4 years ago | (#32688786)

The only problem I see with that, is that squares that were diagonal from each other in the original conversion no longer touch each other in the hexagon shape. Follow two diagonal squares on that diagram from start to finish and you'll see what I mean. I'm leaning more towards the approximation idea (which I guess that diagram illustrates).

Square to hexagon conversion is easy (2, Informative)

allcoolnameswheretak (1102727) | more than 4 years ago | (#32688614)

A hex grid can be thought of as a square grid with every second line shifted by 0.5 * squareWidth on the X axis, so the conversion can be rather straightforward. But yes, it will produce semantic map differences as some squares that were previously diagonally adjacent to each other no longer will be after conversion.

Re:Square to hexagon conversion is easy (1)

delinear (991444) | more than 4 years ago | (#32688668)

I guess the solution would be to allow some tweaking of position during the import process, if they wanted people to get this spot on (for most people close will perhaps be good enough).

Re:Square to hexagon conversion (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32689176)

Well, that's because you're an idiot.

Re:Square to hexagon conversion (1)

Fieryphoenix (1161565) | more than 4 years ago | (#32689290)

Totally in agreement. My head asplode.

Simple, direct conversion from square - hex (1)

Asmor (775910) | more than 4 years ago | (#32694756)

There's a very simple way to convert a map from squares to hexes. Just shift every alternating row down half a unit. This is known as offset squares [wikipedia.org] and it's homomorphic to a hexagonal tiling.

It would mean a very slight difference in the shape of things, but overall it would maintain the same gameplay. The only difference from the original, square-based map is that the rows that stay the same would lose their two bottom diagonal connections, and the rows that shift down would lose their two upper diagonal connections... But since a square map has 8 and a hex map has 6, that's inevitable.

Well my only wish... (4, Interesting)

g4b (956118) | more than 4 years ago | (#32688528)

My only wish about civ is, that I can turn down graphics more, than in part 4.

It should really get a more heatfriendly graphics mode.

Re:Well my only wish... (1)

X0563511 (793323) | more than 4 years ago | (#32688558)

Perhaps you should go back to Civ III :)

Re:Well my only wish... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32688906)

Actually I have done .. and I dont get the same thrill from it now as I did then..Myabe I 'm just older or the game is.. I prefer Alpha Centauri

Re:Well my only wish... (1)

Tekfactory (937086) | more than 4 years ago | (#32689458)

Heat only becomes a problem if you have a lousy energy policy after the industrial revolution.

Re:Well my only wish... (1)

Shrike82 (1471633) | more than 4 years ago | (#32690482)

Good God, yes. Civ IV gets the fans on my gaming laptop spinning faster and more frequently than Left4Dead2. That's just not right. Oddly enough the CPU stays frosty, which I suppose does explain predictable AI but shiny graphics.

Re:Well my only wish... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32691150)

...really? Civ4 is one of the least graphically demanding games out there that's still 3D. I can crank all the settings to the max and run Civ4 on my laptop on battery at 1920x1080 with no issues. Putting it minimum should be almost nothing.

If you want a 2D version of Civ, you're just SOL.

Linux support (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32688650)

I love Civ, and I've got the anthology + Civ IV expansions. Thing is, they all currently run under wine (with no-cd patches), mostly.

I hope (but not too highly), the same can be said for Civ V. 2000 bonus points for no DRM. I would buy it then.

Re:Linux support (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32688920)

Civ 5 is a Steamworks-game.
The DRM will be Steam.

Company does something good? (3, Funny)

IBBoard (1128019) | more than 4 years ago | (#32688736)

How can this make a headline/slashvertisement on Slashdot? That sounds like they're doing the right thing and giving the gamers a better gaming experience by not just ditching all of the hard work from previous games. I'm sure there must be some flaw or lie somewhere - it's just not the corporate thing to do!

Re:Company does something good? (1)

Lillebo (1561251) | more than 4 years ago | (#32688792)

We take care of our own :)

Rumours (5, Funny)

Mr Europe (657225) | more than 4 years ago | (#32688936)

Reliable rumours say that civ5 will use a super close view where most of the screen is filled with face of the selected unit. This enables the player to fully see the facial expressions and and have richer gaming experience. Of course You can take a bigger view, but then you will see only clouds.

And the "Large World" consists of 20 hexagons.

To give all the equal opportunity to fight in wars, all unit are of same power. The Phalangs will successfully defend against Warships. This is good, because it would be sad if rich people would win all the wars.

Re:Rumours (1)

Lillebo (1561251) | more than 4 years ago | (#32689234)

Civ 5 should be (Civ 4 + Beyond the Sword expansion pack + Giant Earth mod + 50 Civ mod). Pluss a lot more political tools like cross-civ organizations (UN, WTO etc) and unions (US, EU etc), sanctions, occupation, puppet leaders. Also in warfare there should be a tactical screen for coordinating units from different allied civs. It also wouldn't hurt if Firaxis teamed up with Monte Cristo and combined Civ and Cities XL into one epic world simulation.

See here [civfanatics.com] for more details on the above mentioned mods.

Re:Rumours (1)

Fieryphoenix (1161565) | more than 4 years ago | (#32689306)

Cripes, fella, just go be a politician if you want THAT much detail.

Re:Rumours (1)

Lillebo (1561251) | more than 4 years ago | (#32689408)

I've tried this [wikipedia.org] , but it wasn't all that. Kinda fun tho.

Re:Rumours (2, Informative)

Chowderbags (847952) | more than 4 years ago | (#32691322)

The Phalangs will successfully defend against Warships.

So what's different than previous versions?

DRM (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32689080)

My question is whether it will have obnoxious DRM or not. I've turned down purchasing some.games, because I had read reports that the DRM required a constant connection to the internet, etc.

Re:DRM (3, Informative)

Lunix Nutcase (1092239) | more than 4 years ago | (#32689972)

The only "DRM" is that it's a Steam-only game, and you can always play steam games in offline mode.

Re:DRM (0, Flamebait)

Lord Ender (156273) | more than 4 years ago | (#32690580)

You cannot always play steam games offline. When steam servers are down, or when you have no internet connection, you cannot go into offline mode. Your games become unplayable in that case. Steam's DRM is another case where pirates have a better gaming experience than paying customers.

Re:DRM (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32690718)

That's not true. I play many games on "Steam" while traveling with my laptop and having no internet connection.

Re:DRM (2, Informative)

Rockoon (1252108) | more than 4 years ago | (#32690854)

What are you talking about?

Your description of how steam works doesnt jive with how steam works.

Re:DRM (1)

Lord Ender (156273) | more than 4 years ago | (#32694948)

In fact I have personally spent several evenings unable to play Steam games for exactly the reasons I stated. It is a fact that Steam's DRM works this way. If you haven't encountered it, then either they don't apply it consistently or you are merely lucky.

Re:DRM (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 4 years ago | (#32691056)

Wrong. When you go homes, unplug your ethernet and then boot up your computer and play steam games.
It's a simple tests, and it shows you are wrong.

Then maybe you will STFU.

Re:DRM (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32691166)

You cannot always play steam games offline. When steam servers are down, or when you have no internet connection, you cannot go into offline mode. Your games become unplayable in that case. Steam's DRM is another case where pirates have a better gaming experience than paying customers.

This is totally and completely wrong. If Steam cannot connect to the Internet, it simply prompts you if you would like to start in Offline Mode. I do this nearly every single day as I have Steam on my work laptop and usually have no net access when I have downtime to play a game.

Re:DRM (1)

Minwee (522556) | more than 4 years ago | (#32692436)

Time for a little copy editing...

You cannot always download steam games offline. When steam servers are down, or when you have no internet connection, Steam will start in offline mode. Your games remain playable, provided that you have already downloaded and run them in that case. Steam's DRM is another case where loud-mouthed forum trolls understand even less than paying customers.

There you go. While there are some circumstances in which being 'offline' will cause troubles, most games play just fine in offline mode. Some will even play without the Steam client running. But don't let that stop you from complaining about how The Man is trying to keep you down.

Re:DRM (1)

Sowelu (713889) | more than 4 years ago | (#32694082)

Flat-out wrong, at least on my computer, and I know on many others' too. I have NO idea why this happens for some and not others, but poke around the Steam forums and you'll find that this is absolutely not an isolated occurance:

When I start up my computer and discover that my wireless is down, Steam prompts me for a username and password. I can't manually run most (not all) of my games, either, because Steam is not really running from the login prompt. If I try to log in, it says it can't reach the servers, and prompts me to start up in offline mode. And when I click "start in offline mode", it says that it can not connect to the server to do that. Can not connect to server to enable offline mode. Let me say that again for emphasis: On my machine, IT NEEDS INTERNET ACCESS TO ENABLE OFFLINE MODE. PERIOD. After a whole lot of testing, believe me, this is an abolute fact for my laptop. Contacting Steam support verified that this is, indeed, correct behavior.

I LIKE Steam. It gets me to spend money on games. But this functionality is absolutely defective, and it REALLY, REALLY IS BROKEN. It's not a case of user error. Yeah, really.

Re:DRM (1)

Lunix Nutcase (1092239) | more than 4 years ago | (#32692760)

I like how your post which has flat out lies in it is moderated as informative.

Re:DRM (1)

Sowelu (713889) | more than 4 years ago | (#32694242)

Uh, yeah. They're not lies. Either that or I hallucinate wildly every time I start up my laptop and there's no wireless around. If I last shut down Steam in online mode, and there's no connection when I start it back up, it WILL NOT let me go into offline mode. I've had long conversations with Steam tech support about this, and I'm certainly no isolated case on their forums.

Re:DRM (1)

Sowelu (713889) | more than 4 years ago | (#32694308)

I find this very interesting. I have the exact same experience as parent, but clearly a lot of other responders don't. Maybe we have some kind of bug? Perhaps when Steam sees a failed connection attempt, it disqualifies you from entering offline mode...and other peoples' Steam don't try to autoconnect without a connection, while ours do?

In any case, parent is spot-on and absolutely correct for his and my own experience. I'm very happy that the rest of you have a different experience, but you might want to go check out the Steam tech support forums before marking this as flamebait: Parent's experiences are a hell of a lot more common than you'd think, tech support considers it correct behavior to NOT be able to go into offline mode without a connection, the official documentation TELLS you to go into offline mode BEFORE losing connection, etc.

Re:DRM (1)

blind biker (1066130) | more than 4 years ago | (#32695008)

Why was this comment modded "Flamebait"? The post is NOT flamebait, in addition to being right on the money: it is true, you can NOT *always* play Steam games without internet connection. And yes, like every other DRM, in this case, too, pirates will have the better experience.

Prior Art (1)

Sovetskysoyuz (1832938) | more than 4 years ago | (#32689152)

Yawn. Paradox Interactive games have had this for years.

Re:Prior Art (1)

dingen (958134) | more than 4 years ago | (#32689384)

I'm sure lots of companies have created conversion tools to get older data to work with newer software before Paradox Interactive did.

New, Old, Whatever ... (0, Troll)

lorg (578246) | more than 4 years ago | (#32689406)

"We're hoping that the first week Civ 5 is out, people will use that function and port all of the Civ 4 stuff over to Civ 5, so everything will be out there already"

WHAT? So they hope that the thing that attracts people to their NEW game is to play OLD stuff? They don't even think that the new and shiny features will be enough to hold the attention of its fans for a single week before resorting to falling back to CIV4 stuff?

That doesn't really fill me with confidence. I guess it's all part of the process that has been going on for a few games now where they tone and tune things down, streamlining it to become easier and easier.

That said, like a good little civaddict I'll get my copy.

Re:New, Old, Whatever ... (1)

Mongoose Disciple (722373) | more than 4 years ago | (#32689594)

I have to think the point is the scenarios and mods... there's a LOT of that out there for Civ 4. They obviously hope that people will create that much stuff new for Civ 5, but it's not a bad selling point if they can say: "There's already more player-created content for this game than you'll live long enough to experience."

That being said, I can't think of a lot of good ones that wouldn't be very heavily broken by other announced Civ 5 changes. For example, removing religion.

Re:New, Old, Whatever ... (1)

lorg (578246) | more than 4 years ago | (#32690558)

That is the thing, there are a lot of them out there - full or partial mods of various kind. Most of them are not that good thou. I can only think of a handful that are even worth the effort such as Orbis. That mod won't be converted at the click of some button since features it relies upon will be gone from the game. I can only gather that that will hold true for most large modifications of its kind.

So what you'll end up with is a bunch of various maps at best, maps that will most likely be included anyway in updated form such as the one of the earth and focus maps of the continents. Which leads me to belive this is such a non-feature I doubt it will really amount to much. Massive amounts of crap content gets converterd that more or less nobody will use anyway. Perhaps it will make some of the content conversions easier and faster but I wouldn't hold my breath.

With that in mind I can hardly see this as being a big selling point. It's not going to be the big content modifications that get converterd this way, those will be recreated later if at all. Just as all the good Civ3 once didn't make it to Civ4 but some where recreated later or evolved into new once.

Re:New, Old, Whatever ... (1)

Lunix Nutcase (1092239) | more than 4 years ago | (#32689984)

Or maybe they know people will want to play maps they are familiar with in Civ4 and are trying to make it easier for people to do so. No, that couldn't possibly be it.

Anyone remember SimCopter? (3, Interesting)

PPalmgren (1009823) | more than 4 years ago | (#32689916)

Its not exactly the same, but I remember enjoying SimCopter a lot because I could take SimCity 2000 maps and load them up in SimCopter and fly around them in 3D. The nostalgia feeling of loading my best cities and being able to play in them was fantastic. I could see people not wanting to lose their custom maps in Civ4, and this is an excellent solution.

I loved loading up a SC2000 map with the army base and stealing the army chopper. This was the closest thing you could get to 3D GTA at the time.

Re:Anyone remember SimCopter? (1)

atrain728 (1835698) | more than 4 years ago | (#32691278)

Yeah. The game wasn't terribly interesting, but flying through your SC2000 maps provided some endgame SC2000 enjoyment for sure.

I really wish more games would apply this concept. I'd definitely buy an "addon" to civ 4 that provided more tactical control over a battle, for instance. The tried-and-true add-on concepts of "here's a few more units and an enhanced game-mechanic or two" are nice, of course.

However, adding an entirely new gameplay angle is something entirely different and far too seldom pursued, I think.

Alpha Centauri II (4, Insightful)

metamatic (202216) | more than 4 years ago | (#32690324)

I've never been into the Civ games, but I'd buy Alpha Centauri II. I wish Firaxis would develop it.

Re:Alpha Centauri II (1)

Mongoose Disciple (722373) | more than 4 years ago | (#32691136)

You might give Civ 4 a try if you haven't already -- I loved the hell out of AC and Civ 4 is the first game in the series to hold my attention the same way. Even if I can't commit atrocities against my own people.

That being said, I too would deperately like to see AC2, but I gather the intellectual property rights for it are all tangled up in an ugly way. The AC user interface has not aged well but overall that was such a great game. I think the biggest thing for me is how differently you needed to play each of the AC factions even though on paper they weren't all that different -- you don't really need to do this to as great a degree in a Civ game, which is realistic but not always as much fun. I would say a number of the better Civ 4 mods have captured this bit of the spirit of AC, if not all of the things that made it fun.

The Alpha Corollary to Godwin's Law (4, Insightful)

twoallbeefpatties (615632) | more than 4 years ago | (#32691180)

As a discussion about Civilization increases in length, the probability that someone will suggest a sequel to Alpha Centauri approaches 1.

Re:The Alpha Corollary to Godwin's Law (1)

blind biker (1066130) | more than 4 years ago | (#32694892)

As a discussion about topic X increases in length, the probability that someone will suggest Y approaches 1.
It's true for any X and Y. It's the old monkeys and typewriters thing.

Alpha Centauri was the best Sid Meier game ever (1)

rsborg (111459) | more than 4 years ago | (#32694424)

The production values on that game were really great (considering it's 10 years old). The quotes and tech was very inspiring and the balance and gameplay were really innovative.

My wish: AC2 with hex maps and some of the features of Civ (culture is pretty nice, but it'd be cool to mate it with the "UN" feature in AC)... that or a modern remake of Master of Magic.

You FaiL It? (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32690418)

800 mhz machine Julie7 Are together

While we're at it (Civ 5): can tactical combat be. (1)

blind biker (1066130) | more than 4 years ago | (#32691454)

...turned off? That is, does anyone know if tactical combat will be made a feature that can be disabled through options? I'm really not very much into tactical combat (that's why I like games such as Civ). I'm really happy about the hex map, this has been my dream for years.

Re:While we're at it (Civ 5): can tactical combat (1)

Shrike82 (1471633) | more than 4 years ago | (#32695222)

What do you mean exactly? You don't like the way you have to decide which unit attacks out of a stack? If that's the case then you can change certain options to resolve stack combat automatically. You select your unit stack, tell them what tile to attack and it automatically attacks with the best possible unit, again and again until either your stack or the enemy stack is gone.

Game Speed (1)

MarkvW (1037596) | more than 4 years ago | (#32691458)

Civ 4 makes me wait a couple seconds for my next move after I hit enter. I'd like to see multiprocessor support and 64 bit support. I hate to wait!

When I played The Operational Art of War (maybe the greatest game ever), I got a new computer and it turbo-ripped through scenarios that the old one was slow on. Civ 4 seems to proceed at its leisurely pace no matter what the computer.

Any ideas on this?

Re:Game Speed (2, Interesting)

dingen (958134) | more than 4 years ago | (#32691898)

I like the illusion that the AI is actually doing something. I wouldn't surprise me if there is a built-in delay, just to let the player feel like a bit like stuff is happening between turns.

Re:Game Speed (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32693862)

Posting anonymously to keep moderations in place:

Firaxis (the devs who make Civ5) has already released information about how they were working with Intel to use the new GPA 3.0 toolset and "Threading Building Blocks" (which I can't say I've heard of...) when building Civ5. The point of this was to showcase the fact that their code would scale very well.

Its not a guarantee, but that sounds a lot like full multi-core support.

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