Saturday, July 5, 2014

Civ 5 goes to space

Civilization is taking flight on October 18th. Developer Firaxis has finally announced an official release date for Civilization: Beyond Earth, the first sci-fi game in the long-running strategy series, which was previously pegged for a fall release. While the game retains the same basic concept as previous Civilization games — you're building up a society over the course of many years — Beyond Earth will have you doing that on a brand-new planet, as you deal with new alien life and incredible new technology. "This is definitely a game that takes its influences from real science and hard science fiction," lead designers Will Miller and David McDonough told The Verge when the game was first announced. Civilization: Beyond Earth will be coming to Windows, Mac, and Linux.

The forgotten consoles

History is written by the victors, but for all those generations of console wars we've managed to weather through, what about the other guys? Opening this week, a new games museum in southern Japan houses 56 different consoles of varying fame (or infamy). For every NES/Famicom, there are curiosities like the huge "Pocket Home PC," failing on the very definition of its name. Remember the Sega Game 1000? We didn't, but we should probably cut these (mostly) beige consoles some slack. While most of the devices toured here weren't a commercial success, each helped gently push gaming toward its current state -- if only by firmly demonstrating what we didn't want. And yeah, we wish the Dreamcast was still around too. Here's to the games consoles we've loved and lost over the last 40 years.