Sid Meier’s Civilization VI (Switch)  – Review
Follow Genre: 4X Strategy
Developer: Firaxis, Aspyr
Publisher: 2K games, Aspyr
Platform: PC, Switch
Tested on: Switch

Sid Meier’s Civilization VI (Switch) – Review

Site Score
Good: Touch controls, Decent port
Bad: Not sure if it was needed to release this one
User Score
(3 votes)
Click to vote
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Rating: 6.7/10 (3 votes cast)

Civilization, one of the biggest timesinks that came into existence back in 1991 on the PC, is still going strong. The sixth iteration of the series may already be a few years old, but it didn’t stop 2K from porting this title to Nintendo’s spiffy new hybrid console. This means that Civilization VI sees the light on Nintendo’s platform, be it on TV or in handheld mode, with supported touchscreen controls. We took a few days off, avoided social contact, to hopefully bring one victory home in this expansive sim game. As this game is a rerelease, you can always check out our more in-depth reviews  of the original release here, and the expansion here.


Story content has always been taken quite lightly in the Civilization games. You do however have a cast of iconic historical characters to choose from, all seemingly immortal in this version of our Earth. The story value stays the same, even if you decide to go with Ceasar during your first play, and Teddy Roosevelt the next. You’ll all start off in a primitive age, hopefully once rising to a modern age where you’ll launch yourself a rocket into space. Of course, the game has other goals, such as total domination, a religious victory or even a cultural victory, which would then end the match. The story is what you make of it, but if you’re looking for a historically accurate sim game, you’d better be off looking elsewhere.


For a Switch port, the game looks quite handsome actually. The cities are very detailed, as well as the structures that start popping up over time. The units are also quite fun to look at, and overall the game looks great for the Switch’s capabilities. Of course, playing in handheld mode will make things somewhat prettier than on the big screen.

The different game menus are quite clear and properly show what they do, but playing through a tutorial might be needed to fill in the gaps of the screens that do not provide any additional information. Overall, things are clear for a console port.


Having Sean Bean as a narrator is quite an extraordinary feat, as he is very pleasant to listen to, he just fits properly into the picture, and perhaps this is one of his sole roles in which he doesn’t meet his untimely demise. Other than that, the rest of the game has its own sound accompanying whatever goes on, making the entire game a picturesque whole. The sound design is top notch, even though we can imagine when playing a game such as this in public, the audio might be muted as not everyone will share you taste of adventure.


Civilization VI is a turn based strategy title, while for some it may be more of a simulation game due to the construction of your own actual pocket-sized civilization. Nonetheless, you’ll be spending your game(s) looking at a map where you’ll eventually build cities, rally troops and befriend or conquer other nations. You’ll have several different options to win the game, such as destroying all the opposition, gaining a technological victory, a religious one, or even go for a cultural victory by wowing the world with your amazing collection of artists. Overall this creates many different ways to play the game, but a lot also depends on how the AI treats you when playing the game. Sometimes they leave you alone, other times, not so much.

The controls are pretty straightforward, but tend to feel a bit slow and tedious at times. Granted, you’ll get what you sign up for, as you simply need to select the character you wish to perform an action with, or the city that needs some managing. It’s sometimes unclear to see what unit has moved, and which one hasn’t. Overall it’s pretty much a case of proper micromanagement, and you’ll get the hang of it after a while. We advise to play the tutorial first, as the game is pretty complex, even with its fairly obvious control scheme and goals. You’ll soon find out that there is a lot more information than you bargained for, and some of the menus will be somewhat unclear or doubtful as to what their purpose is, without the tutorial.

If you’re not happy with the normal way of playing, you can opt to play the scenarios, but for the most part, it’s all about building up a civilization from scratch, research new technology, found new cities, train troops and become a powerhouse on the map. Of course, you can opt to try out the other victories as well, but sometimes it’s just easier to start off by aiming for a war campaign first, and afterwards try the more technical ways of winning. If you think you’re up to the task, you can also play the multiplayer mode, which will certainly keep you occupied for some hours to come.


Was it completely necessary to port Civilization VI to the Switch? Not really. Are we happy 2K decided to do so? Yes. The game is a proper port of a game that still plays best on a computer, but the touch screen interface, and being able to play a proper turn based strategy/sim game on the go is simply a delight. It’s clear that the handheld mode is the game’s forte, as these games are typically reserved for PC play, with a few exceptions hither and thither. If you’re into games such as this, or the franchise in particular, and you want to play the game on the go, or simply don’t have that much PC time anymore, then we can advise you to pick up this version, as it really does not disappoint.


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Rating: 6.7/10 (3 votes cast)
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Sid Meier’s Civilization VI (Switch) - Review, 6.7 out of 10 based on 3 ratings

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