Is Civilization 6 Good?

a beautiful scenery capture from civilization 6
In Civilization 6 you get to shape your empire throughout the ages.

In Sid Meier's Civilization 6, a turn-based strategy game created by Firaxis, the player assumes the role of a great leader who will lead their own civilization throughout the ages. With its strategic gameplay, stunning visuals, and rich content, Civilization 6 offers a deep and fun experience, letting you explore the intricacies of leading a nation, dealing with diplomacy, and managing the nation's resources. Let's take a deep dive into its various aspects to explore its strengths, weaknesses, and overall fun factor.


Civilization 6 is a 4X strategy game, a genre that explores 4 core gameplay mechanics: explore, expand, exploit, and exterminate. As the leader of a small empire, you will embark on a journey of exploration in search of other lands, expansion of your domain, exploitation of resources, and the extermination of threats against your empire. With these premises, this game is a favorite among history buffs.

The gameplay offers a highly engaging and strategic experience. From establishing and expanding your cities to managing resources, diplomacy, warfare, and cultural development, the game provides a vast array of choices and strategies, each with their advantages and disadvantages, and it is up to you to make these choices. The turn-based nature allows for thoughtful decision-making without pressure, making each move feel significant and impactful.

Managing an empire is no simple task. Civilization is one of those games that is grand in scale but simple in its delivery. As the leader of your empire, you will be in charge of city building, technological focus, military command, and resource management. This might overwhelm you at first, but Civilization 6 presents its gameplay as simple and easily understood for newcomers to the genre.


Graphics and Visuals

The graphics and visuals in Civilization 6 are visually stunning. The game's art style, with its vibrant colors and attention to detail, brings civilizations and landscapes to life. The city animations, unit designs, and dynamic world map contribute to the overall immersive experience. 

Although a change from its “realistic” vibes from its previous installments, the game was a breath of fresh air in its graphics, and although it was met with mixed reactions during launch, it was later on welcomed by Civ fans after Firaxis released more content in the following years. The attention to detail in units, buildings, resources, and terrain is intricate, and zooming in-game makes you appreciate the bustling empire you are building.

The UI and Art style of the game also add to its charm; a simple and easy-to-navigate UI is a standard among gamers, and Civilization 6 doesn't miss it. The UI is compact enough that almost every button has a purpose and information to be conveyed to the player, and the Art style also adds to the immersion of the game.

This is also the first Civilization game to introduce the ‘Day & Night Cycle’ visual improvement, where you can visibly see the effects of day and night lighting in a duration of minutes, which adds a sense of realism. Also a graphical improvement are the cutscenes that play whenever you discover Natural Wonders and when you finish building Great Wonders, making you appreciate the beauty and grandeur of the things you build across the map.

Another graphical improvement is that the buildings you build on the map will affect the visuals of the terrain, and some buildings also terraform the environment. As you shape your empire, it will also shape the world around you.


Sound Design

The sound design in Civilization 6 enhances the atmosphere and immersion of the game. From the sweeping orchestral score to the ambient sounds of nature and bustling cities, the audio elements create a sense of grandeur and glory, complementing the gameplay and visuals. 

With each civilization, new music is presented that historically belongs to that civilization. Western civilizations for example, have a theme of piano, violin, and orchestral music that is a pretty good listen, while African civilizations feature more Kalimba, percussion drums, and tribal music that is beautifully rendered. My favorite one is the Shaka theme during the industrial period; that music was a banger!

Every moment in this game has well-composed background music that can sometimes be really relaxing to listen to while playing. Not to mention, the composer of Baba Yetu (the beloved main theme of Civilization 4) Christopher Tin comes back to Civ 6 to compose its main theme, titled Sogno di Volare (The Dream of Flight), a fantastic composition that celebrates the achievement of mankind and is a fitting theme for a grand game.


Depth and Complexity

Civilization 6 challenges players to balance various aspects of their civilization, such as science, culture, military, and diplomacy, creating a satisfying and intellectually stimulating experience. It may be difficult to understand the complexity of the game, but among 4X and turn-based fans, this game offers an entry-level concept for the 4X genre, as there are more difficult and steeper learning curve games out there, and Civilization is a fine game to start in the 4X genre; it's compact and direct to the point.

The game offers remarkable depth and complexity in its gameplay. The introduction of tile placement districts and wonders was a welcome addition that improved the city building and management aspects of the game, and the revamped Technology and Civic tree provides a multitude of strategic options as the culture has its own progression tree, making it definitely a different game from its previous title. 

Although Civilization games are known for their initial complexity, you’ll be surprised that this is one of the best games to play if you want to try the 4X genre. It is not complicated, and you can learn on the go while playing the game. Civilization games are known for having advisers that really help the player early on to understand some of the more complex mechanics of the game. 


Balance and AI

Civilization games are known for their not-so-competent AI, but still good enough to give a fight; however, in Civilization 6, surprisingly, the AI can compete and perform resource management; they can even bum-rush you early game with early game aggression; and they can maneuver their units well, but even with this improvement, it is still prone to bugs and exploits.

To make up for this, there are various game difficulty levels the player can access, ranging from settler (Very very easy) to Deity (Hardcore Difficulty), giving the AI handicaps or bonuses that’ll give them an edge against the player. So if you want to simulate an underdog civilization fighting against all odds against bigger civilizations, I’ll recommend playing on the ‘Emperor’ difficulty.

Maintaining balance in a strategy game is crucial, and Civilization 6 succeeds in this aspect. The game provides a fair and challenging experience with AI opponents that adapt and react intelligently to your actions. The AI's improved decision-making and behavior add depth and unpredictability, keeping players engaged and on their toes.


Multiplayer Experience

Civilization VI offers a robust multiplayer experience that allows players to compete or cooperate with friends or online opponents. The game provides various multiplayer modes, including both simultaneous and hot-seat (players take turns in one console) options, ensuring that players can enjoy strategic battles, empire management, and diplomacy in a fun multiplayer setting.

Firaxis has added multiplayer modes throughout the years; there are multiple game modes that provide challenge and fun among players; there are currently 7 enjoyable Multiplayer scenarios ranging from traditional to spin-off gameplay; and they introduce new mechanics that keep the game refreshing and engaging to play. 

The most popular among these game scenarios are Pirates and Red Death. Pirates is the latest release; it features a randomly generated Caribbean map, where almost 80% of the map is covered in water. You’ll take command of a fleet of ships and plunder your way to being the pirate king, compete against other players, pillage the high seas, and obtain riches to be hailed as the "King of the Pirates".

While Red Death features a Battle Royale type of gameplay where you will fight against others in a randomly generated post-apocalyptic earth, take lead of peculiar and interesting factions each with its own different play styles, and fight your way against a deadly red mist that will slowly devour the map, the last player to survive is the ‘King of the Hill’. With this different and interesting gameplay, Civilization 6 is not short on fun factor.


Expansions and DLCs

Firaxis has released 2 Expansions, 6 DLCs, and 2 Game Passes over the past few years since its original launch in 2016, offering new gameplay scenarios, new civilizations, and additional gameplay improvements and mechanics.

There are 2 released expansions. The first of the two is Rise & Fall, which comes with a huge amount of content, new gameplay mechanics, civilizations, and a set of Natural wonders. It introduces new gameplay mechanics like City Loyalty, Great Ages, Governors, Expanded Alliances, and Global Emergencies.

While the second expansion, titled Gathering Storm, features a primary focus on the natural world, its dangers, and the influence that human civilizations have upon it, It introduces new mechanics like environmental effects and weather, Climate Change, Engineering Projects, the World Congress, the 21st Century era, and more. With environmental effects added to the game, players are forced to adapt to a dynamically changing world.

The rest of the DLC is the New Frontier Pass’ and Leader Pass. These DLCs add new civilizations and alternate leaders to already-existing civilizations. With as many DLCs as this, it can be a little overwhelming that you have to purchase tons of DLCs to truly experience the game, but don’t worry, if the budget is tight, I’ll recommend that you buy the Platinum Edition as it provides the two expansions and multiple new leaders and Civilizations.



One of the things that makes Civilization 6 replayable is its passionate community and modding support. The game's modding tools and Steam Workshop integration allow players to create and share their own mods, further extending the game's content and customization options. The modding community adds to the game's replayability and customizability. 

Civilizations 6 has tons of mods that the player can access via the Steam Workshop; almost every few weeks new mods are released, and the community really banded together to bring a lot to this game. If you ever plan on picking up the game, I would recommend that you try out a few quality of life improvement mods by Sukritact, a well-known Civ modder that is quite popular among the community.

If you want to add more custom content and features without going through a lot of hassle of "file management" or "Installation", don’t worry, as Firaxis has a built-in in-game mod manager that players can easily navigate and access, turning on and off any modifications easily.



Ever heard of the popular connotation among gamers, "just one more turn?" Sid Meier's Civilization is the title that spawned that connotation; it points out that players tend to get addicted to playing Civilization, implying that with "just one more turn," they’ll call it a day.

Throughout the years that I’ve played Civilization 6, it is the very same feeling I get whenever I get hooked up in one of my Civ sessions: you’ll have a sense of urgency in clicking the "next" turn button to finish up that wonder you've been building for the last 20 turns... even though it is already midnight and you still have school tomorrow. So I’ll be cautious when playing this game.

But all throughout, Civilization 6 is a game with a high replayability factor due to the randomness of each session: randomly generated worlds, randomly spawned opponents, different victory conditions, etc. You’ll never really know what will happen in every run; each game you play is more unique than the previous ones you've played, therefore one would never really be bored immediately once they fully grasp the game.


Overall fun Factor 89/100

Overall, Civilization 6 is a good game; it has tons of content, tons of DLCs, and is a good strategy game. Although fun as it seems, the game has some downsides too, notably the hours required for you to dedicate and spend to complete one run; the price of the game can be overwhelming, especially the DLC micro-transactions; but I’ll recommend that you buy the game on sale; and of course, some bugs and exploits that some players pointed out as game-breaking and ruined their immersion in the game.

But despite that, you can’t ignore the dedication of Firaxis to bring out a game like this and still make it on top of the 4X genre; there have already been six civilization games produced ever since Sid Meier created the game back in 1991, and each release always brings something new and refreshing. No wonder this game series is still mentioned as one of the best strategy games of all time.

So, if you want to give the 4X a try and want an entry-level entry to the genre, I’ll recommend you pick up this game on sale and sink some hours into it, manage your empire, and build a legacy that will stand the test of time.



Jack of all trades, master of one, constantly evolving and seeking knowledge. On a quest to discover the Elixir of Life, the quencher of unquenchable thirst, but for now, a writer that writes.
Gamer Since: 2007
Favorite Genre: RTS
Currently Playing: Deep Rock Galactic
Top 3 Favorite Games:Sid Meier's Civilization V: Brave New World, XCOM 2, Total War: Rome II

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