Civilization VI

Aspyr Games

Civilization VI lands on iPad—but it’s not cheap

Be careful, not every iPad can play it.


Chris Reed

Internet Culture

Posted on Dec 21, 2017   Updated on May 22, 2021, 7:11 am CDT

Civilization VI is the latest entry in the highly acclaimed series of turn-based strategy games. It landed on PC last year, but Aspyr Media just surprise-released it on the App Store for iPad. This isn’t a mobile spinoff, either—it’s the full game, complete with touch controls. The app doesn’t cost anything to download, but you get locked out after playing 60 turns. Unlocking the full game costs $30 right now, and that price goes up to a whopping $60 on Jan. 4.

Most big-budget games cost $60 when they’re released on consoles and PC. But that price point is unheard-of on iPad. Most other iPad games range between free and $15. Publisher Square Enix is infamous for charging $20 for classics like Final Fantasy IX and Dragon Quest VIII. But $60? That’s likely to rile a lot of iPad owners.

It’s true Civilization VI is much newer than most of Square Enix’s iOS titles—and much bigger than most $15 iPad games. Still, it will be interesting to see how many people actually shell out $60 for the iPad version once the price goes up in January.

Not all iPads can run Civilization VI. To play it, you must have iOS 11.1.2 or later installed on an iPad Air 2, iPad 2017, or any of the iPad Pro models. That’s no surprise, seeing as how big and resource-intensive the game is. After all, this game has you shepherd a group of people from the dawn of civilization into the space age. In between, you raise armies, fund research and education, and build alliances or make war with neighboring nations. There are many ways to win, so it’s all about how you want to allocate your resources each playthrough.

Civilization VI isn’t the only big-name game launching on the App Store this month, either. Despite a Cuphead release that turned out to be a scam, the App Store got real versions of GRID Autosport, Life is Strange, FEZ Pocket Edition, and Playdead’s INSIDE. It’s a good time to have an iPad—especially if it’s a new model and you’re willing to pay an unusually high price for what’s supposed to be an excellent port of Civilization VI.

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*First Published: Dec 21, 2017, 3:15 pm CST