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Classic of the Month: Civilization II (MicroProse, 1996)

Saturday, 1. February, 2020
Presented by Martin Görlich


My first PC

My personal computer history began in the mid 90s. The time before was shaped by enthusiastic moments with „strange“ PCs. Consoles on the contrary never reached through to me and the way to a grey box and small tube television was paved. After several years of saving up, the moment had finally come: I looted my Knax savings account and together with additional funds from youth inauguration I hurried to ESCOM! I quickly brought the masterpiece home and there it stood, my PC for the next years to come. It was an Intel Penti-um with 75 Mhz and 4MB RAM, the budget didn’t allow for more and except for RAM upgrades this pretty single-core stayed untouched for a very long time. To own a Voodoo graphics card which is on display here in the museum was only a faraway dream. However there was no lack of playable titles, anyhow I had to catch up with many years of video game history. The foundation was built by a cardboard box full of games assembled from my fami-ly members.

And then the perfect game was released!

One of the first self-purchased games was Sid Meier’s Civilization II, released in 1996 and it had already won the hearts of numerous turn-based strategy game fans and remains to be my favourite Civ part. I had already picked out Civilization I from the cardboardbox, however only the second part turned out to be the perfect game for me and really time consuming for the years to come. The game captured me from the first turn and the instant search for the ideal spot for the first set-tlement but also later game turns, when your own civilization would hopefully already be blossom-ing.

I chased every add-on (Conflicts in Civilization & Civ II: Fantastic Worlds) and strained my parents internet line, which in times of AOL and ISDN was still a long way to come to today‘s reality. I spent plenty of time on websites like Apolyton.net and looked for modifications, scenarios and improve-ments for the game. Civilization II received many awards at that time and earned 8,9/10 points on metacritic.com. Not only limited to awards and positive player reviews, also economically speaking the game was a huge success with 3 Mio. copies sold until 2001. For comparison: Warcraft II (1995) had similar sales figures in the same period.

There are also players who dare to advance into the year 3991 a.d. – usually the game ends in 2020 – and spend ten years playing the same game, but most games are definitely shorter.

Take a seat and build your civilization, let’s see if you can pass the test of time! – PS: Just one more turn!
Contact
Computerspielemuseum
Karl-Marx-Allee 93a
10243 Berlin

Phone (visitor service):
+49 30 6098 8577