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Sid Meier's Civilization III: Play the World

aka: Civ3PTW, Wenming III: Youxi Shijie
Moby ID: 7750
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Description official descriptions

Play the World is the first official expansion for Sid Meier's Civilization III. It adds new cultures, units, and scenarios to the original game as well as several multiplayer modes. In Turnless mode, turns are taken simultaneously by each player and a turn ends when the turn timer runs out. In Simultaneous mode, turns are taken at the same time and when all players are done making their moves (or the optional turn clock runs out), the moves are made and units and buildings are produced. Classic mode is where each player takes their turn separately just like in the original Civilization III game.

There are also new victory conditions, most designed to speed up gameplay so multiplayer games do not last forever. In Regicide and Mass Regicide, players are given kings units which must be kept safe. If lose all kings are lost, their owning player is eliminated. In Elimination, a player loses if any of their cities falls. In Victory Control Points, players gain additional points by holding certain victory points on the map. In Save the Princess, there is a princess who must be rescued and held to gain points (sort of like capture the flag mode in other games).


  • 文明III:游戏世界 - Simplified Chinese spelling
  • 文明帝國 III:帝國爭霸 - Traditional Chinese spelling

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Credits (Windows version)

117 People · View all

Lead Designer
Lead Programmer
Multiplayer Programmer
Additional Programming
Lead Artist
Associate Producer
Q.A. Manager
Director of Development
Network Administrator
Multiplayer Turnless Mode Concept and Design
Public Beta Team
[ full credits ]



Average score: 70% (based on 14 ratings)


Average score: 3.5 out of 5 (based on 26 ratings with 3 reviews)

What a ripoff!

The Good
Well, the few meager additions this gives you to Civ 3 are pretty good... The new civs are very good additions.

The Bad
Such a lack of new features! A few new civs, some crap scenarios, and basically multi-player "support" that is TERRIBLY slow, even when there is seemingly nothing going on, the computer lags badly. The new civs, while good, there is just to few of them to justify spending 30 bucks, especially when I can go online and download for free the "Double Your Pleasure" mod which adds MUCH MORE than this expansion.

The Bottom Line
It's just a waste.

Windows · by James Kirk (150) · 2004

Civ 3 Play the World has good ideas, but lousy implementation

The Good
The new gameplay modes have potential. I liked how Elimination made it possible to finish a game in 40 minutes.

Some of the new civilizations are interesting too. Most of them have a big emphasis on early military conquest, and some of the Ancient Era units seem too powerful to me (like the Celtic swordsmen) or they seem to negate other special units. For example, the Numidean Spearmen have attack 2 defense 3, and the Greek Phalanx has attack 1 defense 3 and is slightly cheaper. Which would you rather have?

The Bad
The main problem with the game is that there is so much lag during internet play that the game is unplayable. Shame on Firaxis and Infogrames for releasing their game in this condition. The first night I got it I successfully joined about 3 games out of 10 and 1 of those games crapped out early due to lag issues. The lag is not helped by having essentially two login screens for a game when there could be just one. The first login screen doesn't even let you kick lagging players, so you have to remake the entire game if someone refuses to leave or crashes. The second login screen with the detailed information does let you kick players, but if a player crashes it often doesn't drop them correctly, forcing you to remake the game.

The new gameplay modes really aren't all that great. I liked Elimination for the quickness of the game, but that mode gets old pretty fast. Regicide and Mass Regicide sound cool, but there is no reason to not put all your kings in your capital unless you are playing in the modern era where they could all be nuked. I was disappointed that there were no gameplay modes for cultural or economic victory conditions. "Amass xxx culture points/gold" would have been an interesting variation over all of the military victory scenarios that we get by default.

Finally, the bundled scenarios and maps are of low quality. Several maps don't even have any strategic resources on them or other glaring errors. I also noticed that the scenarios tended to be on huge maps, which are no fun even on a fast computer because the computer takes forever to play its turns. I would have liked to see more small maps and more custom scenarios designed for 1 or 2 hour multiplayer games.

The Bottom Line
Civilization 3: Play the World fails in two ways: it doesn't offer enough new gameplay features to be a worthwhile single-player expansion, and its multiplayer games are currently unplayable, leaving you with not much for your money.

Windows · by Droog (460) · 2002

A Disgrace To The Entire Series

The Good
The IDEA is terrific, sort off; adding multiplayer capabilities to the wonderful "Civilization III." Of course, the game should have come with multiplayer in the first place...

The Bad
Frankly, the quality of workmanship in this package is the worst I've seen in a major release video game in years. Out of the box, the multiplayer system simply did not work; any MP game would crash, and until it did crash lag times could be measured in MINUTES. The various other additional to single player are 70% free online content.

Amazingly, many hardcore fans continue to defend this atrocious product by saying it's hard to program for multiplayer, or that users are screwing it up because they don't know how to reconfigure their computers. I don't doubt that it IS hard to program games, but the fact is that EVERY OTHER STRATEGY GAME ON THE MARKET HAS WORKING MULTIPLAYER. Warcraft III? Working multiplayer. Europa Universalis? Working multiplayer. Every other studio seems to be able to get multiplayer working right out of the box; why couldn't Firaxis?

The Bottom Line
A waste of thirty bucks, and a shameless attempt to make money with a worthless product that should have been offered as a downloadable patch.

Windows · by Rick Jones (96) · 2003


Online servers

The game's online servers which were hosted on GameSpy were scheduled to shut down on 31 May 2014 in the wake of GameSpy's total closure.

The Steam version was updated with Steamworks multiplayer on 16 March 2015.


On Elvis Presley's birthday (8 January), an "Elvis" unit replaces the regular King unit in Regicide mode and is available via the editor.

Information also contributed by Itay Shahar


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  • MobyGames ID: 7750
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Contributors to this Entry

Game added by Droog.

Additional contributors: Unicorn Lynx, Jeanne, Cabeza2000, Alaka, Paulus18950, Patrick Bregger, Plok.

Game added November 13, 2002. Last modified March 5, 2024.