Civilization MMO in the Works?

We all know that there is talks about a BioShock MMO. However, what hasn’t been overly reported on, as of yet, is that it appears that Civilization is also up for the same consideration. According to this Take2 report (via MTV) it would appear that there is a chance that we may get to see a Civilization MMO at some point in the future. Exciting stuff, right? But how would that even work?

For those that have played a Civilization game, most notably Civ 4, you’d probably understand two things about it:

  1. The game is absolutely awesome.
  2. Online multiplayer is decidedly less so.

Civilization just wasn’t meant to be a multiplayer game, and despite Firaxis making bold attempts to create that it just hasn’t materialized. I just can’t sit there and wait 10 minutes until my turn comes around again. Likewise, playing by email is much like playing chess by mail, that is to say, aggravating. So, surely, making an MMO out of Civilization is impossible, right? Not entirely.

Allow me to direct you to two different IPs. Neither of which are directly related to Civilization, but they both share some of the same ordeals and conflicts that a Civilization MMO would encounter: Nation States, and the announced Heroes of Might and Magic Kingdoms. Nation States centers around the idea of having to build up a nation and live with a bunch of other “states”. While the game has no military or building options it does allow extensive government and civic construction through choices made throughout your “states” life. Likewise, with Heroes of Might and Magic Kingdoms is going to be an MMO based on a different turn based game, but the principles stay the same. My point being is that if both of these games actually exist can it really be all that different from making a Civ MMO? Probably not.

It’s an arguable statement to say that the entire industry of games is beginning to lean heavily on the online portion of their games. Hell, it’s almost ludicrous to even think of an FPS game without a multiplayer aspect. In this same thought it would only make sense that traditional turn based strategies would have to make the same jump, one way or another, or die off in the years to come. However, I’ll tell you right now that Take2, and Firaxis aren’t going to let that happen to Civilization anytime soon…