“Chris”:http://twitter.com/ctd and his son Raphael came over last night to play “Sid Meier’s Civilization: The Board Game”:http://www.boardgamegeek.com/boardgame/77130/sid-meiers-civilization-the-board-game. (Why did they have to give this game such a long name and one that is exactly the same as a 2002 game that no one liked? What about Sid Meier’s Civilization V or even just Civilization V?) We had four very enjoyable hours playing it. Apparently it usually takes about an hour per player.
My patience for long efficiency-engine boardgames has worn very thin, but SMC:tBG has the huge advantage of familiarity. I recently played a full game of Civilization IV on my PC and this boardgame is close enough to make learning much easier.
Michael Barnes wrote a pretty negative review of SMC:tBG, calling it a “heartlessly efficient process-driven machine”:http://www.gameshark.com/features/782/Cracked-LCD-177-Sid-Meier%C3%A2%E2%82%AC%E2%84%A2s-Civilization-Review.htm. He says:
bq. If what you are looking for is the mechanics of CIVILZATION more or less faithfully reproduced as a board game, this may be a game for you. I would be inclined to steer anyone so interested toward games where the designers have explored the CIV idea rather than bringing its literal gameplay to the tabletop.
That’s harsh. SMC:tBG does what it says on the tin and does it well. It is forgiving and accessible, unlike Through the Ages. I actually downgraded my rating of Through the Ages after playing SMC:tBG.
I would like to play again. Three players is probably best, just due to the length of the game, but four would be more directly confrontational.