Sid Meier’s Civilization VI: Maya & Gran Columbia Pack (PC) Review

By Chris Leebody 19.08.2020

Review for Sid Meier’s Civilization VI: Maya & Gran Columbia Pack on PC

Released in 2016, Sid Meier's Civilization VI has undergone plenty of refinements, and developer Firaxis has also released a fair share of DLC to spice things up. Now in 2020 comes a new raft of DLC on the horizon through the New Frontier Pass, which is a roadmap of additional content running up until March 2021. New civilizations, leaders, game modes, and buildings are promised in this deluge of new content. First up is the Maya & Gran Columbia Pack adding the two factions with their own districts and units. Also coming alongside is a new game mode: Apocalypse, which delivers a radical shift in the turn by turn game with the environmental and climate change effects really coming to the fore. It should be noted as well that the DLC plays best with those who have both the existing Rise and Fall and Gathering Storm expansions, with most of the new modes coming heavily reliant on owning those.

DLC is nothing new to the series and Maya & Gran Columbia Pack is pretty standard fare as far as additional content to the Civ VI experience. Firstly there are the two new factions to play as. Simon Bolivar leads Gran Columbia. The South American nation also comes with a few new interesting abilities and bonuses including a new general spawning each and every era. Also coming with a new hacienda housing building, there are now additional options for appeasing that never ending quest for keeping populations happy.

Still in the South American continent but from a different era comes Lady Six Sky ruler of the Maya; an interesting faction that marries up the Mayans traditional fascination towards astrology and the stars with a new district, the Observatory, which improves upon the campus, and helps those interested in the science victory. Both additions to the leader roster certainly look and sound rather impressive in their design and charming characteristics. Frankly it is always good to get some new variety, and the South American influence definitely strikes that and scratches an itch from the base game.

In terms of new additions there are also a few new interesting wonders from that part of the world, including the Fountain of Youth with the helpful healing buff that is rather fun to use. Then of course there is the Bermuda Triangle - transporting a naval unit across to another tile. Ultimately if that was all that was included in this new pack it might be fair to say that while they are neat additions, it is rather underwhelming.

Screenshot for Sid Meier’s Civilization VI: Maya & Gran Columbia Pack on PC

Thankfully the standout addition is the new game mode or difficulty. Apocalypse adds a radical new layer on the previously explored climate change mechanic. Previously, this would naturally follow a stable path, until closer to the end game when things would start to, quite literally, heat up and suddenly disasters would become more common. Apocalypse instead basically makes this process much more intense and deadly.

There are new disasters, including solar flares which knock out electronics, and then deadly comets which reduce a huge space of tile to rubble. General disasters like floods and volcanoes are made more deadly and frequent. Alongside this there's a new religious based unit, the Soothsayer, who can command and trigger natural disasters under certain conditions. What this does well, is to allow the player to utilise the many natural dangers around the world map in a way they couldn't do so much before, and definitely adds another strategy. The final endgame in this mode races to the finish, as the world is consumed by a raging climate.

Now, while it certainly switches things up and adds a new challenge, there are also aspects which get in the way, and anyone playing needs to appreciate that having constant forest fires and solar flares disrupting things can get in the way of those trying to race to a finish. Trying to get a science victory, and then having the climate set the space programme back 15 turns is far from ideal.

Screenshot for Sid Meier’s Civilization VI: Maya & Gran Columbia Pack on PC

Cubed3 Rating

6/10
Rated 6 out of 10

Good

For a first pack in the New Frontier Pass, Maya & Gran Columbia is not a bad start. It adds a bit more variety in the selection of factions to choose from, which is always ideal, and there are a few new units and mechanics to play with that will keep things a bit more fresh for any Civ VI fan. The real standout in the pack is obviously the Apocalypse difficulty mode, and it injects a reason to think, particularly in the endgame state, which can notoriously get bogged down. That said, as fun as it can be, it probably isn't the kind of game one would choose to experience with every play-through as it can certainly edge towards frustration at being crippled by the hazardous effects of climate change.

Developer

Firaxis

Publisher

2K

Genre

Strategy

Players

1

C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  6/10

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  0 (0 Votes)

European release date None   North America release date None   Japan release date None   Australian release date None   

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