Civilization V Ate My Brain

Between an extra heavy load at work and a death in the family, I have been pretty worn out. Every day seems like a struggle to get ahead. I just get my head above in time for the next wave.

Which is why this evening came as a relief when there was nothing critical I had to do. No family issues, no work related worries, and the wife was out working. A whole evening by myself.  Well, myself and Civilization V.

My love of the Civilization games has been a slow burn. Civilization I and II didn’t do much for me (though I did enjoy the sci-fi themed Alpha Centuri spin-off). Didn’t even play III. I only tried IV because my wife really liked it, and I wanted to be a part of that.

Down the rabbit hole I went. The slow pace and turn-based strategy made it a relaxing yet mind stretching experience. The gameplay is turned such that there is always more to do, always a reason to go back for “just one more turn.” Pretty soon, you’ve lost complete track of time.

Yesterday, Civilization V was released. As big fans, it was an instant day 1 purchase. It was also the perfect salve to my ills. I dove right into the game, revealing in the familiar while digesting the new. This game takes everything that was great in IV, throws out everything that was bad, and adds whole new levels of awesome.

I played an entire match from beginning to end in one sitting, taking only minimal breaks for food and drink. Over five hours the game grabbed me, I had a wonderful relaxing experience, putting everything else out of my mind. The game kept pulling me constantly in for just one more turn. While I doubt I’ll continue this kind of marathon play, I’m definitely up for more. Without a doubt, Civilization V is a perfect sequel, and one of the best this year.

And now I’m going to go relax and try not to think about anything too hard. Don’t want to strain the brain too much. There will be new civilizations to conquer tomorrow.