Civilization: Beyond Earth Details: Interactive Technology Web Can Help You Perfect Your Science Strategy

By Connor Sears , Updated Oct 23, 2014 10:13 AM EDT

The hours are counting down until Sid Meier's Civilization: Beyond Earth finally launches, but you can still get your fix while you wait. An interactive version of the game's Tech Web is online for players to experiment with and see if they can plan out their ultimate science strategy before actually getting in the game.

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The tool (which is actually really neat and available for you to play around with here) shows off the game's entire Tech Web. It shows where each tech lies in relation to the others, which techs are prerequisites for other techs and, most importantly for strategy, what each tech grants a player upon research. Hovering over a tech tells the user how much science it costs, and a counter in the upper right corner keeps track of how much science has been spent as the user clicks around, simulating researching technologies.

The tool also keeps track of how many Affinity points the user has acquired based on the techs he or she has selected, a handy tool to have if you're looking to see how quickly you can become a Harmony genius or a leader in Supremacy.

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All players start off with Habitation, a tech that grants basic exploration and military units along with the basic culture and health buildings. From there, the player has eight decisions right off the bat for how they want to start their science game, six of which lead to additional choices. If you find your starting position filled with harmful alien miasma, you might want to start with Ecology to get Miasmic Repulsors up and running as soon as possible. Players looking to start trading or expanding right away will want to check out Pioneering fairly early. Heading toward Chemistry will let players beef up their early-game production capabilities. And those are just three options

Beyond Earth's Tech Web is quite an upgrade from Tech Trees of the past. Unlike in a game like Civ V, if a technology has more than one tech leading up to it, only one prerequisite tech is required to start research on that later tech. The web also includes so-called "leaf technologies," which are the techs that hang under main-line techs. When a main-line tech is completed, all of its leaf techs become fair game. They don't have to be completed in any particular order.

Beyond Earth's Tech Web offers players more freedom than ever to customize how they want to direct their science resources. Sid Meier's Civilization: Beyond Earth launches on PCs worldwide tomorrow, October 24.

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