Civilization: Beyond Earth Will Include Quests

Civilization: Beyond Earth will include a quest system and a new orbital layer for satellites.

These features and more were revealed by Firaxis in a discussion where the company took time to offer up more details about the recently announced addition to the Civilization franchise.

Including the aforementioned quest system and orbital satellite options, players will also be able to take advantage of “seeding” options that allow them to customize the composition of their colonies. These options will be similar to the civilization selection in the franchises prior games but will also give players additional choices such as what spaceship they travel in, what cargo they fill it with, the people they bring and what planet they land on. The planet selection especially will have a drastic effect on the outcome of the game as it will determine the sort of environment, resources and life forms their civilization will be contending with over the course of their game.

Players will also soon find themselves meeting up with other prospective colonists who will quickly become competitors for their new alien world. If war breaks out between these competing factions players can apparently expect the game to feel quite similar to Civilization 5.

“I am a big fan of the way warfare was designed in Civilization V,” said lead designer David McDonough. “I thought it was very elegant and would make a good fit for this game as well considering we’ve added these alternate game layers–such as the orbital layer–which sort of let you break that rule by launching units into space and having them effect units on the ground without being stacked on top of them.”

The orbital layer will allow players to deploy satellites that can grant considerable advantages to players’ economic, military and spying efforts. Orbital space will be limited however, making it a necessity for players to capture it quickly.

Players will also need to align themselves with a particular affinity that can be strengthened by taking on quests and researching technologies which will now be organized into a branches to help push players down their desired course of development. According to McDonough, this new system will make it difficult for players to research everything technology in the game.

“Each branch technology has a number of leaf technologies underneath it, representing specific specializations of the main branch. These leaves are also associated with one of the three affinities,” he explained. “Gaining allegiance to an affinity begins the path towards a technology victory specific to that affinity. At no time are you ever locked out of researching any technology, but it’s very unlikely you’ll be able to research everything in the game. By the end of the game, you will have a set of technologies that tells a story of who you are, and who you were.”

The player’s affinity will, in turn, play into the way they win the game. Beyond Earth will feature five different victory condition (harmony, purity, supremacy, contact, domination), of which only two will be affinity neutral. It’s the studio’s hope that the new quest system will help guide players to their victory of choice.

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