Sid Meier's classic strategy game Civilization is getting a space age spin-off. Civilization: Beyond Earth will be a "spiritual successor" to the 1999 game Alpha Centauri, and will see players starting over with human society on alien worlds.
Whereas Civ generally ends with one culture developing space travel and heading off to the stars, that's the point where Beyond Earth will start. Unlike Civ, where you have to choose from genuine world leaders from history, in this game you'll create your own human culture from scratch at the start of the game.
You'll then be able to found new colonies, and expand those to even more planets by settling outposts. If you're the first to reach an unexplored planet, you may encounter new alien species and neutral galactic societies. Planets will fall under three types, Lush, Airy and Fungal, and there will also be three broad ways to play. Harmony means trying to build a civilization that fits in with the alien worlds you find yourself on. Supremacy means dominating the galaxy through technology. Purity is for players who want to stick with what they know, and recreate Earth society as best they can.
"I think it's a great demonstration of how well the mechanics of Civ hold up in different contexts," lead designer Will Miller told PC Gamer. "The mechanical beauty of the game, stripping out all of the fiction, the history, is very cool. It can be applied in lots of different ways. It's exciting to get the opportunity to not just take the core of Civ and put it in space, but also to take the core of Civ and change it, and evolve it in ways we couldn't have done before."
Civilization: Beyond Earth will be out for the PC this autumn.