2K and Fireaxis Games are so excited to be celebrating the 25th anniversary of the Civilisation series, they’ve announced the release date for the next game – October 21, 2016.

Sid Meier’s Civilization VI will offer players new ways to interact with their world, expand their empire across the map, advance their culture, and compete against history’s greatest leaders to build a civilization to stand the test of time. Will you survive or will you fall to the beast known as Time? Only your skills will tell.

“Sid Meier’s Civilization games hold a reputation for defining the 4X gaming genre for the past 25 years,” said Christoph Hartmann, President of 2K. “We can’t think of a better way to celebrate the silver anniversary of our longest-running franchise than launching the eagerly anticipated Sid Meier’s Civilization VI, which will provide the most detailed, beautiful and complete experience ever featured in a Civilization game.”

The release of Civilization VI marks another milestone in the franchise, which has sold over 34 million units worldwide. In this newest title, cities will physically expand across the map to create new, deep strategic layers, and active research in technology and culture will unlock new potential ways to play. The large variety of leaders will pursue their own agendas based on their historical character traits, as players race to achieve victory however they choose to play. Good, evil, or somewhere in between yet leaning to the left? Up to you.

“Sid Meier’s Civilization VI builds on the firm foundation of the Civilization franchise, and we’ve added many exciting new elements,” said Ed Beach, lead designer at Firaxis Games. “The visual presentation of the game is inspired by the maps and tools of the Age of Exploration, and we’ve made several key gameplay changes such as expansive cities and active research that makes Sid Meier’s Civilization VI an entirely unique experience while remaining true to what makes the Civilization series so special.”

Key features of the new game include:

Expansive Empires: See your cities sprawl and expand across the map like never before – each city spans multiple tiles, so you can take advantage of the local terrain to its fullest.

Active Research: Unlock boosts that speed up your civilization’s progress through history – use your units to actively explore, develop your environment, and discover new cultures as quick as you can.

Dynamic Diplomacy: Interactions with other civilizations will change over the course of the game – from primitive first interactions where conflict is a way of life, to sophisticated late game alliances and negotiations.

Combined Arms: Expanding on the “one unit per tile,” design, support units can now be embedded with other units: anti-tank support with infantry, or a warrior with settlers. Similar units can also be combined to form powerful “Corps,” units.

Enhanced Multiplayer: As well as traditional multiplayer modes, you now have a variety of modes you can play with friends that are designed to be completed within one session.

A Civ For All Players: Civilization VI not only gives veterans new ways to build and play, but also has new tutorial systems for players who aren’t used to the game yet, making Civilization VI more accessible and enjoyable for all.

Civilization VI is rated PEGI 12, and is available for pre order for Windows PC, costing £50, and will be released worldwide on October 21, 2016. There’s also a Digital Deluxe edition that contains the full base game, the 25th Anniversary Digital Soundtrack, and access to four post-launch DLC packs that will add new maps, scenarios, civilizations and leaders for a bundled discount. So if this sounds like your kind of thing, be sure to pre order it soon!