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A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this game.
Players make many choices for their civilization. For example they can choose to enact slavery or not, or institute a state-religion or not.
Violence & Scariness
Players can see armies in battle but only from a distance.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
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Products & Purchases
Part of a series of games.
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that this game doesn't contain much objectionable content, but it is a challenging game that may be more enjoyable for tweens and teens. The game encourages strategy and teaches some history, politics, and civics. Parents should note that the game is very time-consuming -- be sure to set time limits before playing. Also, the game can be played online, which could slightly alter the content of the game --Common Sense Media does not recommend online play for kids under 12.
Is It Any Good?
There is a lot of strategy involved. Players must carefully consider how their decisions will affect their civilizations. Enact slavery? Choose a state religion? Some decisions influence culture, others productivity, and others military strength.
But players learn more than strategy. Historical quotes are scattered throughout the game, and an interactive Civilpedia defines various civil and government structures. Firaxis' Web site has an area for educators, since many use the Civilization series of games as a tool to teach politics, civics, and history. With a 200+-page manual and a steep learning curve, Civilization IV can be daunting, but players who stick it out will be rewarded with a deep, challenging game that even weaves in some educational material.
Did we miss something on diversity?
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Our Editors Recommend
Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.See how we rate