You knew from the start, that this was going to be about Civilization V? Every single time I boot up Steam, I just have to stare at the number of hours I have poured into this game and I begin to wonder, what else I could have accomplished in those 600+ hours. I could have written several books instead of just one. I could have written dozens, if not hundreds of blog posts about pretty much any subject. But no, I had to play it, and now I have to write about it.
The strange thing about those many, many hours is, that even though I have those thoughts, I do not feel guilty. The game helps me unwind in a way, that very few other games do: It keeps me coming back and engaged, but never so much, that I can’t do other things too. I love playing Civilization V while listening to podcast for example, and it’s one of the very few that allows me to do that without diminishing my experience of the gameplay. I can also write while playing, since my computer can take quite some time to calculate the other players’ turns. Even playing other games while playing Civilization V is totally possible, as long as they are simple, like Cookie Clicker.
Right now, I am trying to get as many achievements as possible. This is especially fun, since I have to try other civilizations, that I would never have used, if it weren’t for the achievements. Am I a chievo-whore? I think not, since I normally do not care about them in other games. I just use them as an excuse to play some more.
The funny thing is, that the original appeal of the game never vanished for me. I love creating an alternate world, where the political landscape (and the real, geographical one too!) looks completely different from what we experience on a daily basis. This is also why I can’t get into Civilization: Beyond Earth: There just isn’t a real connection to that science fiction world, that the game tries to show to me. That’s pretty sad since I can see that it is a pretty decent game.
Will I ever stop playing Civilization V? Only if there will be a Civilization VI, I guess. If I ever exhaust all the potential of the game, I can always start with using mods in order to make it interesting again. And I never really experienced multiplayer with the game, so that’s still an element, that I’d like to explore some day. Off to the next 600 hours then!