Civilization V paces its games by number of turns. The Short Pace game has 330 turns, while the Normal Pace is 500 turns, the Epic Pace 700 turns, and the Marathon Pace is 1,500 turns. The Short Pace game has several advantages that the developing gamer can use to increase game skills.
Trying Out New Strategies
One of the intriguing features of the Civilization game since its initial release in 1991 is that losing the game offers opportunities to try out new strategies. If the gamer pays close attention to why some other civilization won, these strategies can be tried out at a lower lever in a Short Pace game. Everything happens faster in the Short Pace game, so the new strategies can be quickly practiced and mastered. It may take many tries to get the strategies right, but the Short Pace game will save a lot of time in the process.
As the gamer develops skill, games played in the same old way might become boring. If a set of strategies wins all the time at a Normal Pace, then the Short Pace will introduce a turn limit for challenging the master gamer. When a Short Pace game is set to the highest difficulty level, the master gamer may discover that her or his mastery is not that strong after all. It may seem that the software has given the rival civilizations unfair advantages right at the start, and in fact that is one technique used to increase the difficulty level. However, the gamer has the clever human mind that can, given enough effort, discover the strategies that will beat the computer.
Keeping Victory Options Open
With only 330 turns to work within, the gamer may be tempted to attempt only a time victory, which is having the highest score among the civilizations by the time the turns run out. Still, it is possible to achieve a technological victory, which I have recently done by turn 329. Talk about right down to the wire! Since this was a difficulty level one lower than normal, I could have simply conquered all the other civilizations and won a dominance victory. That just seemed too easy, and so I kept my victory options open and was well rewarded for the effort.
Shortening the End Game
With the longer games, the end game can become a drawn-out ordeal. While this can also be fun for trying out the highly advanced game Units, the novelty wears off quickly. By the time turn number 300 rolls around with the Short Pace game, the end game comes up rapidly. Perhaps the end game comes more rapidly than desired, depending on the level of success during the earlier game stages. Still, failure in Civilization is always a victory for enhancing game play skills.
Upon first blush, the Short Pace game might appear to be meant for impatient gamers who want to zip through a meaningless one-night-stand with the game. This is far from the truth. The commitment is different, more like a whirlwind romance than a one-nighter. As mentioned, everything happens more quickly in a Short Pace game. This is not for the inexperienced Civilization gamer. In fact, the Marathon Pace game takes things nice and slow, which the gamer new to Civilization will probably find more comforting.