One of the most reassuring aspects of Civilization IV was Leonard Nimoy, the most iconic voice in the series. Every time you discovered a new technology, Nimoy would be there for you: delivering in grave and stately tones a relevant quotation from a scientist, philosopher, or politician. You felt better for it. Wiser. A little less nervous about Gandhi's nuclear program. But with Nimoy's passing last February, Civilization has had to turn to a new narrator for humanity's progress. And they've chosen — rather brilliantly — Sean Bean.
Bean has already appeared as the narrator for game's trailer, but PC Gamer has confirmed he's also in charge of the tech tree quotations, with the publication collating some of his quotations below:
Sean Bean will be the voice of Civ 6's tech tree quotes: https://t.co/BhAEJPl2qS pic.twitter.com/NYF3lFrRKG— PC Gamer (@pcgamer) August 3, 2016
You can't replace Nimoy, of course, but Bean brings a whole new type of Northern English charm to the role. While Nimoy's delivery was like a wise old immortal's, generously opening up cosmic wonders for the player, Bean's seems less... awed. He's a Sheffield lad, and there's a good-natured surliness to the way he turns his vowels — just think about Bean as Ned Stark in Game of Thrones, gently mocking Mark Addy's Robert Baratheon. (Also a Yorkshireman; I'd forgotten how good the accents of GoT were.) It's exactly the sort of guidance you want as you try to take over the world: grounded and sane, but without being humorless.
You can also watch the rest of the gameplay video from PC Gamer, which takes in a number of new features introduced in Civilization VI — the first totally new Civ games in six years. You can see how cities are now laid out, with nearby tiles given more precedence thanks to new district, as well as changes to workers (they're consumable), the tech tree (boosts for geographically relevant advances), and unit movement (to cut a long story short: it's going to take longer to get places).
As usual with Civ, it's difficult to tell exactly how these changes will play out before we've sunk at a least a couple of days into the game, but at least we can say it's a good job Bean's on board. Let's just hope he makes it all the way through each play-through.