Short Civilization III Interview
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A link on Blues pointed us to this short interview with Jeff Morris of Firaxis, the associate producer for Civilization III. This much-anticipated addition to the famed Sid Meier series will be ported to the Mac OS by Westlake Interactive and published by MacSoft.
The most significant information revealed by the interview is the news that the game is due to go "beta" (for PC) within 2 to 3 weeks. Obviously the sooner this game reaches a stable, feature-complete status for PC, the sooner the Mac port can begin in earnest. While a simultaneous release has not been promised (nor is it expected) the fact that Westlake is already in "Early Development" on this title portends a release not too far behind the PC version.
One of the elements that set the Sid Meier series apart from other turn-based strategy games is the ability to advance in the game through economic and diplomatic means, rather than just warfare. Here is a clip with details on the art of diplomacy:
Apolyton: You're playing civ for some time now :) How have the new ideas around culture and diplomacy changed the game for you? Read the rest for more details on this game in progress.
Jeff Morris: They fundamentally changed the way the game plays. Culture's impact on the acquisition of new territory and how you support a high culture civilization are definitely a 'new' way to play. By building (and more importantly maintaining) the city improvements that generate culture, you're closing off certain other play styles (like large, offensive military forces). Further, wonders that alleviate the maintenance costs of improvements become critical. Diplomacy's major impact is enabling resource trades. Since you really can't be competitive in this game without SOME luxuries and strategic resources, you need to maintain stable relationships with your neighbors. The tools to permit these arrangements are enabled by your play style. For instance, without an embassy, you can't expect to know the standing relationships between civilizations, or subscribe to complicated diplomatic arrangements like Military Alliances.
Jeff Morris Interview at Apolyton.net
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