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Not very long ago, GameSpy sat down with Soren Johnson and Barry Caudill to discuss the problems civ has encountered, amongst other things.
Check it out!
GameSpy: Are there any fan projects or serious mods out there already that you enjoy? Is there anything specific in development you're really looking forward to?
Johnson: Actually, one of my favorite mods made it into our most recent patch. A user from CivFanatics named ulfn altered our score graph to be a line-graph instead of the Civ III style fill-graph. We liked it so much that we asked him if we could share it with everyone. We are very impressed with the output of the mod community so far, but we know that it's just the tip of the iceberg. Once the SDK is released, things will start getting really interesting.
GameSpy: Have there been any surprises from the fan community?
Johnson: One development that is quite remarkable is the number of XML and map-editing utilities that have been created to help other modders make scenarios. We purposely kept our data in as open a format as possible -- plain text for maps, XML for game data -- and that decision seems to be paying dividends for the mod community. One especially surprising one is the Atlas Project, a stand-alone Civ IV map generator. This took me by surprise, as map generation scripts were already moddable via Python. However, from a technical point of view, we actually developed Civ IV not as a specific game, but as a turn-based strategy game platform, and the Atlas Project hints at just what might be possible from that perspective.
GameSpy: What are your immediate plans for supporting the franchise and interacting with the player community?
Caudill: We have two very exciting things coming up in the near future, but I can't talk about them yet. Let's just say they involve competition regarding two very important aspects of Civilization IV.
My guess for those two exciting things: Modding contest and MP tournament.
It's a very nice interview, so be sure to check it out!