Rising Tide is the first expansion pack for Beyond Earth that throws in quite a few features in the existing games, such as the floating aquatic cities, new factions, biomes, and the new diplomacy system that adds a new dimension to the game. Firaxis, the developer for Beyond Earth has done a commendable job in offering a meaningful expansion pack for Beyond Earth fans and it is not just an addition of a few toys to the existing game.
Rising Tide, just like original Beyond Earth, puts you in throne or council, depending on the type of leader you choose to be. You drive your civilization to triumphs on alien planets in distant future. In this futuristic world, you will find plasma weapons, exo suits, bulbous architecture and the chariots and arrows of past human civilization do not find a place in this game. The rising tide expansion pack allows you to colonize the seas, bringing commerce, resources and hardworking people, amidst the waves.
One of the changes that Rising Tide bring to the table is the new Affinity system. The original Beyond Earth allowed societies developing along one of the three paths – Supremacy, Purity and Harmony. This made a it a kind of rigid selection and with the Rising Tide, you have the option of having hybrid affinities. This not just opens up more options, it feels logically much more complete.
In the gameplay, an essential change has come in the form of aquatic floating cities. The floating cities add another interesting dimension to the gameplay, wherein the cities can move in any direction, one hexagonal tile at a time. Depending on the current needs of the game and the focus area of operations, one can choose to move the floating cities.
The new diplomacy system adds another interesting facet to the gameplay. Now you can strike international deals, change the personality traits of your own leader and manage alliances. For example, if your leader shows wise acumen, then surrounding dignitaries would like to become ally out of admiration. Managing the personality trait from being a tyrant to peaceful visionary brings in different responses from surrounding leaders, and this brings in an interesting dimension to the strategy of the game. The element of personality into a strategy game makes it very refreshing. It is not like role-playing games but a personality driven facet adds freshness to the genre.
Rising Tide is an engaging expansion pack that takes the concept of Beyond Earth ahead by adding interesting features and new dimensions to the gameplay. For the fans of Beyond Earth, it is not the one to be skipped.