Sid Meier's: Civilization VI is shaping up to be a worthy successor to Civilization V. With Civ VI just around the corner, here are three big reasons to be excited.
Civilization VI is taking a new approach to city expansion. Cities are no longer relegated to one measly tile. For the first time in a Civ game, cities will expand out onto the map, spilling into adjacent tiles in the form of districts.
Districts are specialized sections of your city that take up a tile within your empire's borders. These districts have a two fold impact on Civ VI. Visually, cities start to look big and sprawling in the later game. Gameplay wise, they have a much bigger effect.
Many buildings have been moved into districts, meaning you must construct the required district first before starting on their construction. For example, a Shrine requires a Holy Site and a Workshop must be built in an Industrial Zone.
Wonders have also been moved out of the city center and onto the surrounding tiles. Constructing a wonder will not only require an empty tile, but the necessary criteria must be met in order for the tile to be eligible for placement. No more building the Great Pyramid without a desert tile.
Lastly, forcing cities out of one tile and into the surround areas has strategic implications. Militarily, districts and wonders may be targeted, making pillaging more destructive and harmful than in previous games. Districts also receive bonuses based on their surround tiles. Players are now forced to adapt to their surrounding terrain and can't just blindly follow a memorized build order.
Religion was added to Civ V in the Gods and Kings expansion pack. While it became a key part of the game, it always felt awkward that there was no victory type associated with it. Civ VI fills this hole, adding a much needed religious victory. This victory requires your religion to become the predominate religion for every civilization in the game (50% of each civilization's cities follow your religion).
Along with a religious victory comes religious combat. This stands separate from traditional combat. Missionaries and apostles can engage each other in holy fights, with the former only being able to defend, while the latter can defend and attack. This means that throughout a game there will now be two types of war going on, the traditional war, and the religious war.
The diplomatic victory has been removed from Civ VI, but diplomacy itself has been greatly improved. In previous games, AI civilizations have been rather opaque. It was always hard to tell exactly what they were thinking and why. In Civ VI, the diplomacy screen now shows diplomacy modifiers if you have the necessary intel.
Another major addition is casus belli, or reason to go to war. You have always received a warmongering penalty for starting wars but now there's a way to lessen that penalty. As you advance your civilization you will gain valid reasons to go to war. If you can match the requirements for a casus belli you will be able to use it to declare war and will gain a lesser warmongering penalty.
These are only the big changes and additions in Civ VI. There are other smaller changes that will make this game much more enjoyable to play. If you want to learn more about Civ VI, there are many videos and articles on the official website. Civilization VI come out on October 21st and will be available for Windows, Mac and Linux.