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TOP 1000 REVIEWERon 30 September 2010
At the time of writing, there are 68 reviews of the game Civilization 5, concentrating on the use of Steam and the apparent "dumbing-down" of the game. This, however, is a review of the manual in its own right, and therefore cannot comment on Steam or how Civ 5 works as a game. It's just a review of the manual.

This is my 68th review, including several strategy guides. I have marked some others guides only 3 stars. Therefore, please believe me, when I say how bowled over I am with this guide.

For starters, it is 240 A4 pages in full colour throughout. Even Prima's Official Strategy Guide to Civ 3, which is quite a good guide, is only 206 pages, black and white, and is smaller than A4. The colour adds to the sheer beauty of this guide.

Secondly, it is *very* comprehensive. For example, there are three A4 pages devoted to each and every leader/tribe, introducing both the leader, its unique strengths and passive benefits, and a half page conclusion as to how this tribe plays. With a 2 page introduction, this is 56 pages about the tribes.

At the beginning of this guide, there are 33 pages describing the opening options, basic gameplay and changes from Civ 4 (half a page per change). Following the extensive pages about the tribes/leaders, there 84 pages about the units, buildings, wonders and technologies, each with at least a long paragraph (e.g. 3-5 sentences long), maybe two paragraphs.

There follows a brief section on Tiles, Resources and Improvements, and 60 pages on the Principles of Victory. Short sections on Multiplayer games and Achievements round off this book.

Basically, this is a great standard for a Strategy Guide, one which other guides would do well to emulate.
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on 13 October 2010
AquaViola nailed this in their review - and apologies if the title of my review should read what she said.

Forget the controversies around Steam and the apparent dumbing down of Civ 5, if you want to play Civ 5 you will find this book helpful. I have been a Civ fan since the very first version but still find this book useful. Although there is the usual online encyclopaedia I find it easier to look up some things in this because it also provides comment and advice. Certainly a model of what a gaming guide should provide and strongly recommended.
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on 22 February 2011
Having purchased the Civ IV strategy guide I looked forward to this one.
It turned out to be a huge disappointment because there's nothing to it. It's a list of units, promotions, leaders etc. but has no tips on strategy. The book for Civ4 had a range of options for the warmonger, scientist, diplomat, etc. but this has nothing similar. The previous book also had a range of combat strategies from the Dagger, Sledgehammer, and variants like the rubber dagger. Again there is nothing of the sort in this book.It's just an instruction manual not a strategy guide.
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on 31 October 2010
Given the limited information contained within the game itself I would say this is a must have if you like Civ 5.

It is very well laid out and covers all the civilizations and units in excellent detail with some extremely useful strategy guides and tips for whichever type of victory you are aiming for.

Highly recommended.
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on 1 October 2011
As a seasoned player of this game I did not learn anything and as a reviewer below says: it is something of a rehash of the in game manual...
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on 1 November 2010
The book gives useful tips but goes over much that is in the manual.
I could have got the same information from the Civilopedia on the game disc. To much information on leader traits and units not enough on strategy. I still enjoyed reading the book.
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on 13 April 2011
Got this today and had a quick skim through before settling down to read the sections most useful for me. I have this game on my MacBook Pro labtop.

It has 239 pages of information on glossy, coloured pages. A lot of it is taken up by descriptions of each nation, the advantages, disadvantages and unique qualities and units.

Another large chunk is taken up by descriptions of the Buildings, Wonders, Technologies and resources.

A helpful section I found was "Principles of Victory" will tells you about gameplay aspects with some good advice on how to build up your nations. I had always, in previous incarnations of Civ, just built much the same items in each city, but it wasn't until I read this guide that I thought about making my cities specialise in the different variants of the world (production, science, economy, military, etc).

All-in-all not a bad guide though not as in-depth as other guides for other games. If you are a vary experienced player of the Civ games and routinely play the at a minimum of "Prince" level of difficulty then you may find that this guide doesn't really teach you much, but for newbies or the occasional player then it will be of use.

Here is how the book is broken down:

1. Learning The Game (including changes from Civ IV) - pages 4-22
2. Mastering The Basics (most of which is taken up by Nation, Unit and Technology descriptions) - pages 34-167
3. Principles of Victory (Gives advice on how to get the most out of the game - to a limited extent) - pages 168-227
4. Multiplayer Civilization (Just gives an overview of the multiplayer mode of play) - pages 228-237
5. Achievements (Lists in-game the achievements you can earn.) - pages 238-239

Do I feel I have wasted my money on this guide? No, not really. It has opened my eyes to a more fulfilling way of playing it, however, it could have been a lot better and contained a lot more information on methods of play. Another feature that is missing that would have been vary helpful is an index.
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on 17 February 2011
As a new player to Civilisation I needed some help with strategy. I do not get the chance to play on line as my job means I am often called away at short notice. So I can take time to look at options and try to find the best path. This book outlines every feature of the game and gives a basic overview of the effectiveness of units, buildings and wonders etc. It also provides some opinions and ideas of the best stragegies to follow depending on your playing style. It is therefore very useful for a beginner like me. Basically it is well written and informative.
If you are an experienced Civilisation player but have not yet treid version 5 the book also oultines the many differences between this version and the last.
So great for a new player but for anyone who has already played to a higher level I would not recommend this book, you will get more out of the online forums.
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on 30 March 2011
Every few weeks they patch the game and they've made major changes since the first release. Don't even think about buying this out-of-date rip-off.
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