The year is 3991 AD and the three remaining nations of the world have been engaged in military conflict for 1,700 years. 90 percent of the world’s peak population has died as a result of nuclear conflict, and Vikings wield ICBMs. Welcome to the future, as predicted by a 10-year game Civilization II.
Reddit user Lycerius posted about his ten-year-old Civil II game in the gaming subreddit early Tuesday morning, describing a world where the Vikings, Celts and Americans are engaged in an endless war (reveal: Reddit is a cousin site of Ars). In the post, Lycerius explains that in this game he was already far into the simulated future at the time Civil III came out, but wanted to see how far the game could go and what the world could look like as the simulation progressed.
A few in-game millennia later, the landscape consists mostly of “flooded wetlands”, as the polar ice caps have melted 20 times. Engineers are constantly building roads for armies to be destroyed by enemies the next turn, and feeding the military beast means the warring nations don’t have time to clean up the swamps or nuclear fallout. The lack of sustainable farmland has left a starving, miserable world population suffering under communist and theocratic control. “I was forced to abolish democracy about a thousand years ago because it endangered my empire,” writes Lycerius; his senate continued to brush him aside when he wanted to declare war on the Vikings.
Caught up in the fray, Lycerius asked his fellow Redditors how he could move the game forward. The prevailing advice seems to be to convert his nation to fundamentalism, which hinders further investigation (everything has already been discovered anyway, putting all nations on an equal footing) but ensures that there are no unhappy citizens and that buildings yield money instead of happiness. A new religion could give him the monetary and military edge he needs to finally take out the other nations. Other redditors are clamoring for Lycerius’s save file so they can play the scenario themselves, and the game has spawned its own subreddit where the discussion continues quickly.