Aug 24, 2011
When it comes to turn-based strategy games on the PC, there just aren’t any around that can hold a candle to the Civilization series. In fact, Sid Meier’s Civilization V has been known to devour entire weekends, leaving me curious about when it became Monday, and why I haven’t moved in about 48 hours.
The Civilization series hasn’t made its way to the Android platform just yet, but Revival 2 has.
Revival 2 puts you in charge of an empire in which you’ll have to build cities, research new technology, and build up a military to keep yourself safe. Just like in the Civ series, you can take multiple paths to achieve victory in Revival 2. Unlike the Civ series, one of those paths involves killing every other empire’s emissary. No matter which type of victory you’re shooting for, you’ll want to take your empire’s emissary and bury him deep within one of your most well defended cities.
You’ll have to research new technology, build cities, manage military units, and have workers build new improvements on your land in order to conquer the world in Revival 2. Unfortunately, the counter-intuitive controls make running your empire extremely difficult.
Each action you take involves an unnecessary number of button presses. For example, instead of double tapping a unit to select it, and issuing commands, you have to tap one button to cycle through your units, tap another button to select the unit once you have it highlighted, and then you can either tap in a direction to move the unit, or tap the unit itself to issue a command. Just to be clear, the controls work just fine – they’re just unnecessarily complex. To make matters worse, the menu system is extremely convoluted. Without the tutorial, you’d never know where certain features for cities and units were burred.
The interface is the digital equivalent of walking through a waist-high pool full of pudding, which is a shame because under that broken UI lies a deep gameplay experience. In fact, if there’s another turn-based strategy game on the Android Market with equally robust gameplay, we haven’t seen it.
If you can find patience and tolerance in your heart for the game’s poor controls and user interface, you’ll probably find Revival 2 to be an extremely enjoyable game. Try the demo – if you don’t want to throw your phone across the room by the end of the tutorial, you’ll probably want to go ahead and pick up the full version.