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Civ 3 is a strategy game where you start at the beginning of time as a civilization and work your way through time. You must make allies with other civilizations, negotiate to get materials or maps, and research to become a more intelligent nation. What place will you make in history?

Plot

You start at the beginning of time as a civilization. There are many nations to choose from (Rome, Greece, Germany, China, Japan, India, the Aztecs, the Iroquois, Egypt, Babylon, Russia, America, France, Persia, the Zulus, and Britain). Each civilization has its own advantages and disadvantages, so be careful in choosing which nation you will pick to lead. The idea is to win the game (obviously), but there are many ways in which to do it. You can win by military power, diplomatic means, cultural victory, or by being the first nation to launch a space ship bound for Alpha Centauri. The sky?s the limit. In addition to picking a civilization, you must also pick a form of government. The choices are: Anarchy, Despotism, Monarchy, Republic, Communism, and Democracy. As with the civilizations, each has its own advantages and disadvantages.

Advancing

In order to win, you must advance and discover different technology. This is lots of fun to do. You can choose to advance in what you want or listen to what your advisor recommends. There is a whole bunch of stuff to research and each helps you along to becoming a more powerful and wise nation. There are three different ages in Civ 3: Ancient, Middle Ages, and Industrial. In order to reach these you must climb a technological tree. Researching certain things brings you closer to a new age, so be careful on what you research.

Managing the citizens

You may be the most powerful warlord this side of the Mississippi, you may be conquering nations left and right, but it doesn?t mean squat if you can?t control your citizens. If you?re not a good ruler and are paying no attention whatsoever to your people, they will riot. Not a good thing! There are different ways of taking care of this. First off, there?s actually paying attention to your citizens and being a good ruler. This is the best way to do it. Other ways are: ? Lowering your taxes: Nobody likes taxes and neither do your people. ? Entertainment: Entertain your citizens by sending out entertainers. They can?t be too grouchy when they?re having fun. ? Production: Make improvements that the citizens will enjoy. ? Use your form of government to your advantage. Despotism, Monarchy, and Communism can use Military police to restore order.

Military Power

What fun could a strategy game be without military power? Since Civ 3 starts from the beginning of time and works its way up, there?s an enormous amount of different military units. From simple warriors to Man-o-War to Jet Fighters, each unit has its own abilities that make it different from everything else.

Negotiation

As you roam through the world and explore, you will find different civilizations. Upon entering their territory the nation?s leader will meet you. Each civilization?s leader has its own personality. The personalities can range from pleasant, to humble, to annoying, to down right rude. You will have to treat each nation differently to get what you want. Sometimes, getting what you want could mean war, or it could mean trade. Each nation is different. A little hint about one of the civilizations: The Zulus tribe?s leader is a backstabber. Either avoid him or destroy him, I don?t care which. Just watch out for him.

Graphics

The graphics are very well done when moving your units, but the real graphics shine in the negotiations. The faces of the leaders are simply drop dead gorgeous! As the years go by, the leader?s clothing and backgrounds change. The clothing is extremely well done. The one let down was there was no lip-syncing. Actually, they don?t say anything at all; you just read what they say. This kind of bummed me out. But still, the graphics are fantastic!

Appropriateness

There is fighting in this game, but no blood. When one of your units is killed, they howl and fall down and die. Nothing too graphical, though. Also, there is worship to idols, which I wasn?t too happy about. And there is the theory of evolution, which doesn?t excite me either.

Overall

If you like strategy games, you?re going to be in seventh heaven playing this game. It?s extremely deep. A little too deep, for my liking, but I?m not too big on strategy games either. I still had a great time playing this game and I?d recommend it.

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Christ Centered Gamer looks at video games from two view points. We analyze games on a secular level which will break down a game based on its graphics, sound, stability and overall gaming experience. If you’re concerned about the family friendliness of a game, we have a separate moral score which looks at violence, language, sexual content, occult references and other ethical issues.

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