Civilization: Beyond Earth PC Patch Notes: Huge Update Now Live, Balances Trade Routes And Health System

By Connor Sears , Updated Dec 08, 2014 02:43 PM EST
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After weeks of teasing a huge patch for Civilization: Beyond Earth, developer Firaxis finally announced today that the patch is now live and should start downloading for PC players once they start up Steam.

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Most of the patch deals with further balancing all of the game's mechanics to make sure matches are fair and fun. One game mechanic that took a sizable hit is trade routes. Trading in Beyond Earth had proven to be much more profitable than in previous titles, and many players had complained that setting up trade routes was too easy of a way to make sure that your civilization was never underfunded. Now, all trade routes in Beyond Earth will be providing a lower yield to make the mechanic less dominant, and naval trade routes will no longer be granted yield bonuses over land-based routes.

Another mechanic that players were hoping would get overhauled is the game's Health system. Health in Beyond Earth was touted as being less punishing than Civ V's Happiness, but it turned out to be too forgiving. Players would routinely finish games with hilariously lower Health scores – the penalties for low Health were worth the resources you saved by not investing in Health infrastructure. With the new patch, players with low Health will be penalized more, and players with higher Health will receive greater benefits.

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At the first signs of negative Health, a civ's growth will start to fall, followed by culture, science and then production. And the individual penalties only increase in severity as Health decreases. Being at -2 Health will cost a player a 4 percent growth penalty. Let the Health fall to -10 and that penalty has increased to 20 percent, not to mention the culture and science penalties that just popped up. On the other hand, nurturing your civ's Health to high levels can earn you up to 20 percent bonuses for production, science and culture, among other perks. With this change, hopefully players will start taking the Health of their people more seriously.

The new patch includes a whole collection of various balance tweaks, player-requested additions and bug fixes. It accomplishes everything from giving the Slavic Federation a bit more power to color-coding the game's Tech Web, a fix that was actually first implemented in one of the game's most popular mods. The update's full patch notes are impressively lengthy, showcasing just how much work went into this first major update, so make sure to check out the full list to see everything that this patch does.

Civilization: Beyond Earth is now available for PC and Mac. A Linux version should be here by year's end.

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