What does one do next?
Well, the obvious answer is to do a computer program that writes music in the style of the legendary J. S. Bach. So we worked on CPU Bach. While doing that, though, we continued to discuss the topic of our next game. We considered the Civil War (which, by the way, is still simmering on the burner), and we talked about various other topics, including a game about the discovery and colonization of America.
This idea didn't get very far. We were thinking of a game system totally different from Civilization. We didn't really think that much more about the idea until a combination of circumstances conspired.
As always, the game is the result of the efforts of a lot of hard-working people, and we got a lot of design ideas from many different places. The Quality Assurance department deserves much credit for their input, as do all the artists and musicians that participated. A look at the credits at the end of the manual will give you an idea of the people involved and their roles.
We'd like to thank Bruce Shelley for his work on this book and his contributions to the game. We knew Bruce before he became a famous author and hope he won't forget the "little people" that helped him along.
One of the more important decisions concerned the treatment of the native population. Historically, there were several approaches: the Spanish approach involved slaughter and pillage, while the French favored cooperation and alliance; the English and Dutch showed toleration until that was no longer perceived as financially viable.
In Colonization you are given the same choices. The natives are friendly until you do something that changes their attitude. Trade and cooperation with the natives is a viable alternative for the patient player, but other courses of action may prove successful as well.
You also compete with other foreign colonial powers for dominance of the New World and its resources. The other powers are aggressive and will almost always compete militarily for control. However, a nation's ability to carry out military operations depends almost entirely on its success in the economic arena; very little direct military support comes from the home country. Instead, you must mold the resources you have at hand-including people resources-into a viable money-making endeavor.
Speaking of people resources, the experienced player will recognize already the importance of this aspect of the game. You must learn how to put the talents of your people to good use within your colonies. The colonists come with a wide range of skills that must be matched with the appropriate terrain or building to make them efficient and productive. The success of the colonial empire depends on your ability to manage your people.
Ultimately, Colonization requires you to build a viable governmental infrastructure within your fledgling nation, capable of sustaining itself without the influence or tax-ridden support of your Mother country. You want to create an empire that can survive an invasion of well-trained Europeans from your home country.