Civilization V: Gods & Kings expansion announced

Spies and religion are returning to Sid Meier's Civilization V in its first expansion pack, announced today, which will also bring revamped combat and bags of other new things. Named Gods & Kings, it's due from developer Firaxis in, oh, less than one turn--in "late spring." As you might guess from the expansion's name, religion is a pretty central feature. Using a new resource, you'll be able to found your own customized religion and create Great Prophets to spread the good word. Spies are the other big returning Civ series feature, having been curiously absent from the base game. "Spies can be unlocked to establish surveillance of foreign cities, steal advanced technologies from your strongest competitors, or garner influence with City-States through election rigging, or even a coup," publisher 2K Games explains. Many Civ V players had hoped a future expansion would shake up the combat, and Gods & Kings promises to have "reworked" it and shook the AI up to compose better armies. Naval combat also gets tweaked, splitting ships into melee and ranged types. Gods & Kings also brings 27 new units, 13 new buildings, 9 Wonders, and 9 civilizations, including Boudicca's Celts, William of Orange's Netherlands, and Pacal the Great's Mayans. Then there are foreign embassies, new scenarios including "a Victorian science-fiction scenario," and look, there's loads of stuff, check out the announcement post on the 2K blog for more. "Our team has a strong vision for bringing religion and espionage to Civilization V and the incomparable Civ community has expressed their enthusiasm for these features as well," said Sid Meier. "We're excited to deliver this robust expansion pack that will give players countless hours of new gameplay experiences and more reasons to take just one more turn."

The first Gods & Kings screenshot