Thoughts on Rise & Fall

I was gifted a copy of the Civilization VI expansion, Rise & Fall, by my Dad for Christmas. It was released at the beginning of 2018 and I had been keeping my eye on it for some time, aiming to grab it on sale at some point. He did this for me instead, and since I hadn’t played the game in a couple of years I knew I needed a new play through to get acquainted with the new features and mechanics. Besides adding new units and buildings, there were some key features added to the game, along with some new civilizations to command. I chose to go with one of the new civs, Scotland:

Robert the Bruce ended up being my leader, and his Highlanders (that don’t become available until after you’re able to produce firearms) were quite handy in battle. When creating this campaign, I decided that I only wanted to allow either the Domination or Science victories. I have a habit of warmongering a bit in the Civilization series, so I decided that I would aim for the Science victory and only fight with other civs when they attacked me first. I stuck to this throughout the game, and war did indeed come to my doorstep. I chose the realistic Earth tileset, and for civilizations to start in their real world starting locations. As such, I started on a tiny little island with England.

One of the new features was introduced almost immediately, that being Governors. They are a new part of the government that helps you to keep full loyalty in your cities where they are established. They also come with perks that are unique to each governor, and you can use these to your advantage as needed.

It wasn’t long after getting somewhat established and expanding to the east with a new town that London started getting angsty towards me. I’m not sure exactly what I did to them, but in true historical fashion they attempted to subjugate my people. In non-historically accurate terms, I ended up destroying them and claiming London for my own. Take that, ya damn Brits!

It wasn’t long after this that I expanded a bit further into the northeast and soon Poland was denouncing me and attacking as well. I managed to take over a couple of their cities in the process of war, but then we made peace. They would denounce me over an over again for controlling their cities until their inevitable collapse to China.

I managed to make a few wonders during the campaign, but only one was a new addition with the expansion (the Statue of Liberty). That particular wonder provides two new settler units with which I used to colonize the new world.

There was a plethora of new resources on this new continent, and thankfully I had put a bunch of research into upgrading my navy so I was able to support this endeavor, even after Rome advanced into the territory and dropped a surprise war on me, on two fronts. I only fought them off and didn’t take any new territory for myself in the process, mainly because at this point I was just trying to further my scientific goals.

The late game consisted of spy games and creating wonders. Spies are a more interactive feature in this iteration of Civilization than the previous game (where they were originally introduced). You can send them to various cities and then use them for various missions, including stealing research or great works, or to slow down enemies production. Some spies in my cities were consistently creating partisan rebels that I would have to eliminate, but most of the time they would wander off to fight with Rome instead, which was nice. I was nearing completion of my first space port and had researched the necessary Mars components to gain the space victory, but there was only about 40 turns left (of the 500 limit) so I don’t think I would have been able to win anyway. China ended up getting the science victory and my story had come to a close.

It was a bummer, but it was still a fun experience, and I think this expansion truly brought this game up a notch. I’m looking forward to the next expansion that’s coming this year, and I will likely revisit Civilization VI again after that point. One last new feature I would like to point out, is the addition of a history scroll that updates periodically throughout your game, and brings a nice personal touch to the game that has been missing in iterations past. I’ll leave you with a slideshow of my personal journey through this play through.

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Pretty cool. I would highly recommend picking up Rise & Fall particularly if you can get it on sale. Otherwise, perhaps you should wait for the complete edition that is sure to come out sometime after the next expansion releases. Either way, Civilization continues to be an amazing gaming experience.

8 thoughts on “Thoughts on Rise & Fall

      • It’s Rise and Fall plus the base game and a number of expansion packs Poland, Australia, Vikings, Nubia, Persia and Macedonia, and Khmer and Indonesia. Sale price is good for another 2 days. It’s one Steam key. Wish my laptop could handle it but by the time I get one that can, Civilization VII will be out.

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      • Well the cycle has been small DLC packs and two major expansions. The 2nd major expansion for this iteration comes out next month, but it will still be a couple of years before we see 7th edition.


      • That’s probably how long before I can afford a laptop capable of handling the game.

        Also, once a sale starts, it tends to make the rounds between, Humble, Steam, and the main Civilization site, generally only on sale one place at a time.


      • Yeah. Honestly don’t think the game has that high of system requirements though. But I have a self built desktop that was pretty high end when I built it in 2015. Still hasn’t stuttered almost 4 years later even running mostly everything at 2k.


  1. I’m very much looking forward to the expansion this year, but the one you posted about doesn’t look like something I want to spend my money on. Thanks for the review!

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  2. I didn’t care for Rise and Fall after it 1st came out, even expressing a bit of “buyer’s remorse” in my 1st impressions post about it. But I played it more and am used to it now, and have learned which techs and culture unlocks give era score and whatnot, so I’m generally always in at least a normal or golden age when I play. I still don’t care much for the loyalty mechanic, but since I usually tend to try to settle out a bunch of cities early and then turtle up to go for a science or cultural victory, it usually doesn’t really affect me much, since I’m not taking cities that I have to try to keep.

    The newly announced expansion with its changes to strategic resources sounds like it’s adding a lot of micromanagement, though, so I’m not really excited about it…. though knowing myself I’ll still get it anyway. I’m bad like that…..

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