NGN - This is New Gamer Nation here with the 2K people to discuss Civilization V: Gods and Kings. So why don’t you give everyone an idea of what they are going to see with this new expansion.
2K Games – Sure. We tried to put as much content into this as we can. We used Beyond the Sword as our benchmark. We got 9 new civilizations, we are also throwing in Isabella of Spain with that, 27 new units, 9 new wonders, new buildings, and new resources. There is a lot of new content and of course new game systems including religion and espionage and a lot of AI work, combat rebalancing. It is a tremendous amount of content.
NGN – So we know that religion is one of the things that everybody cried about when Civilization V was released. So what was the motivation to bring that back into the series?
2K Games – Sure. Well religion in Civilization 4 was primarily a diplomatic modifier. When Jon put together Civilization V layering religion on top of that is yet another diplomatic modifier on top of a completly new diplomacy system didn’t make sense at the time. When Ed took this over, he wanted to start a large scenario called “Into the Renaissance” and its a really huge scenario that’s in the game that had to do with religious conflict and who held the Holy City and things like that. It was kind of born there. So he wanted to put together a whole religion system that really felt good with this game. People were already used to choosing policies and things like that so he thought of a belief system that basically allowed you to assemble your own religion. We really think it was effective and it came out well and it is something that really integrated with the rest of the game.
NGN – You also mentioned that Espionage was a new addition to the game, so do you want to give a brief overview of how espionage makes its way into the series?
2k Games – Yeah this is something our fans really wanted to see included in the game so we are glad we were able to include this in Civilization V: Gods and Kings. Basically it works differently than Beyond the Sword and the only thing it shares in common is stealing techs. We wanted it to impact diplomacy more than anything else so now you can send spies to city-states and with that you can rig elections and stage coops. The best thing about it is the intrigue system so now you can embed your spies in other civilizations and sniff information right out of the AI system and know what they are doing or what they are planning to do. The higher promoted your unit or spy, the better information you are getting and you can actually use this information to be an information broker. You can go to other civilizations and share it with them and they will love you for it. They might come back to you if you are on friendly terms and give you information that their spies found out. So there are a lot of really cool possibilities for this in the late game.
NGN – What has the fan experience been today? What has everyone been saying?
2K Games – It’s been really positive so far. You never know what you are going to get because our hardcore fans are our biggest critics too at the same time. It’s been really great because this is the first show we’ve really gotten to interact with the fans. We’ve done GDC and things like that but it’s always been about press. So actually seeing their reactions and hearing them respond to the game and the comments going out the door has been really cool. I am living on Civ fanatics just watching the comments come in from the live stream interviews and stuff like that and it is really encouraging.
NGN – So where can we see this and when is it coming out?
2K Games – June 19th it will hit the streets, June 22nd international. It will be on Steam, retail, online outlets, pretty much anywhere you are getting your games, Gods and Kings will be there.