Sid Meier's Colonization
Written by Administrator   
Wednesday, 10 November 2004
We review Sid Meier's Colonization, an empire building game with a twist, deserves to be looked at. Sid Meier’s Colonization was released in 1994. You are an English, French, Dutch or Spanish colonizer and you have set sail for the New World. Each nationality has their own characteristics; the Dutch are very good traders while the Spanish are good fighters. After a while of sailing you arrive to the New World, you set up a colony and then the game is under way.

Colonization is very similar to Civilization but with better graphics and much more options. The aims for your colonies are to become independent, creating independent bells and acquiring founding fathers does this. The bells are created with statesmen, printing presses and with some founding fathers, after a while the bells spills over to the population and if a certain amount of people want independence you can go for it. The founding fathers you get to choose with a couple of turns in between. Each father has their own benefits, some makes it possible to trade with other European nations, another one gives you a frigate and so on.

Also to build successful colonies you need money; acquiring different kinds of items that you can sell in your homeport or trade with the natives does this. There are a lot of items that can be acquired by harvesting and mining. During the game you develop the capabilities in the colonies to produce larger numbers of trading items. However your European home country imposes taxes and tariffs on the good that you sell so eventually to make money you have to find other channels of trade or switch to more profitable goods.

What impresses me the most are the many options in Colonization, you don’t have to follow a special story line or anything. You can build up a pirate empire, a trading empire, a fighting empire or anything really. Also the connections you will have with the natives and your fellow Europeans are interesting. There are lots you can put into the conversation with the natives but perhaps not as much you can interact with the other Europeans.

The natives generally offer a lot of things that can be good. For example they give you knowledge, workers, options for trade and much more. However all the different tribes have their own characteristics, some of them are more for war than the others.

There are five ships in Colonization; caravel, merchantman, galleon, pirate ship and frigates. There is also a sixth, the Man O War, which is not available during regular game play without cheating. However when you declare independence you can count on that you will be seeing several Man O Wars coming from Europe after your colonies.

Different ships can carry different amounts of cargo, the ship that can carry the most is the galleon and the Man O War. Frigates are more suitable for warfare at sea and pirate ships operate under the pirate flag and not your own flag.

The world the game is set in is the American continent, however you can choose a random world also. I wish that the option existed where you can select other scenes of colonization, for example South East Asia, India and so on. Also a major colonial power is missing in the game, the Portuguese. The sound in the game is not overwhelming, however the nice colonial inspired music gives a bit of atmosphere.

Overall Colonization is simply a great game, it serves as a history lesson for the colonial era and at the same time being fun to play. I have devoted several hours of my life back in 1994-1996 playing this game constantly. I wish that there were other worlds though but other than that it’s great.



Developer: Sid Meier
Website for game: N/A
Publisher: Microprose
O/S: DOS/95/98/ME/XP
Cost of Full Game: $8.98 Click Here To Buy

386, 33 mhz

Tested on:
Pentium III Mobile 850 mhz, 384 mb RAM, Windows XP
Pentium II 333 mhz 64 mb Ram, Windows 98 

Final Verdict: A history lesson and a fun game mixed into one, great combination!

Comments (2)
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1. 06-08-2007 18:28
Well you got FreeCol for MAC, download on
2. 06-08-2007 17:42
I only have a Mac and REALLY want to download it but can't find Colonization for Macs
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