Monday, October 11, 2010

Civilization 5 Got Blasted

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Over on CivFanatics, they linked up a review of Civ 5 done by a guy named Sulla, who is known for his unbiased reporting and for giving very good walk-throughs for the Civilization series. Unlike the big-name magazines and websites, Sulla doesn't have a personal stake in deceiving anyone to buy a bug-ridden, poorly made game, so he doesn't have an obligation to hand out high ratings. He doesn't get insider information or kickbacks, which means he doesn't have previews and giveaways and such, but then if you guys had an iota of patience and waited for the honest reviewers to have their say, you wouldn't be pre-ordering a game and then feeling ripped off by it.

Things aren't always what they appear, you know. Just because a bunch of people tell you something is good, that doesn't mean it's actually good. If you stop and consider that all these sources of information have a vested interest in lying to you to get you to spend money, you'd realize you're being played for a fool. Kind of like how a friend got played when a girl he met once had been preceded with raving compliments, but when he met her, he found out she was just a phony. It works the other way, too; a guy I know was constantly being bad-mouthed something horrible, and then when I met him, I found out he was actually quite a decent fellow. When someone sees themselves as your master, they lie to you to get you to do something you otherwise wouldn't.

You know what I think?

I think you should do your own thinking.

You won't, of course, because you don't know what it really means to do your own thinking, and you've got so little practice at it, but you really should learn how to do it, so that when someone tells you something about someone or something else, you can reserve judgment for YOUR encounter, and experience him/her/it for yourself. Instead of believing people who want either your money or your misery, stop for a second, throw off the shackles they're putting on you with the information they're feeding you, and THINK!

"If I believe what that person is saying, what do they gain from me?"

The answer is usually power. Power to get you to buy a game you won't like, or a car you don't need, or watch a movie that sucks. Power to deny you the company of a true friend. Like when the beauty magazines try to tell you that you're not pretty enough, and you have to buy their makeup or clothes or read their articles to find out what men think. Like when the calendar tells you it's some made up holiday whose only intent is to toy with your emotions and make you buy something to "prove" your love. Like when the whole of Western Civilization is telling you that the only way to show your fiancee you love her is to buy her an expensive diamond. Like when your jealous boyfriend convinces you that everyone is out to get you, which stifles your career in public speaking. Those people are stealing your personal power from you. They think they own you. And when you believe them without finding out for yourself, then they DO own you. They ARE controlling you.

You'll find that everywhere. Not just product reviews and advertising (which are just about the same now), not just "friends" trying to control you, but you also find it in government and religion. Politicians lie to get your vote so they can get their hands in the till and steal the big bucks. You don't think a country that built as much as we have could possibly go broke without at least 535 leeches bleeding it dry, do you? When some religious figure tells you what God wants you to do, how do you know that's actually true? Does your holy book say it, or did someone only TELL YOU that it says it?

Look, guys, even the most trusted person you know will lie to you under the right circumstances, ESPECIALLY people who have promised they'll NEVER lie to you. I know we don't have time to verify absolutely everything, but when someone has an awful lot of say over what you do or what you think, it's time to start questioning their motives and look for the real truth. Is that the best product for me or could it be garbage? Is that person really trying to hurt me or am I believing someone who thinks they own me? Can that politician be trusted, or should I check the public record? Is that religious leader saving my soul, or is he just asking me to die to fulfill his own sexual ambitions?

Stop being used. Start taking control of your own life and make your own decisions.

Here's a couple clues. The more something is hyped, the worse it usually is. I initially found this to be true with movies, but it also seems to work well with games and even with people in general. And the other is, the person who has the most to gain or the most to lose from your decision is almost always lying to you.

For the last several months, we've all been told how wonderful Civ5 was going to be. There were HUGE fights over it being a Steam exclusive, a few disagreements about hexes being used (which were easily defeated), some commentary about how cartoony and hard to see the game looks (which it still does), and lots of people saying, "Just wait 'til it comes out to judge it." And a handful of us also said, "Wait 'til it gets released and reviewed by an independent before you buy it." Oh, you scoffed, decided you had to have it immediately or sooner, spent all that money and chomped at the bit, thinking anything with Sid Meier's name on it had to be good, ignoring the recent flops, some of which even had his paw prints on them! (Sid had little to do with Civ5.) And now what've you got? Another MoO3 disaster, that's what. You spent all that money, and the only reason you're playing it is because you're determined to like it when really you should be demanding a paycheck for being their playtester.

Civ5 is HARDLY the only game with such issues, I'm sorry to say, and yet, you guys just keep right on buying shoddily made games. Some people only have to be burned once, but enough can't seem to get enough char-broiling, and so we all suffer.

If you want to buy something without thinking about it, buy something from Amazon through one of my links. You'll get better value for your money, and chances are you'll learn something important that'll save you money.




















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Other articles you'll find interesting or helpful:
Writing is Easy
Nelson Mandela isn't THAT good
Curse cookies!

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