Civilization VI's Multiplayer Has Issues at Launch

This story from 2016 looks at issues experienced by players trying out Civilization VI's multiplayer.

Published: October 22, 2016 4:14 PM /


An astronaut looking wistful in the Civilization VI launch trailer

It seems like the launch of Sid Meier's Civilization VI didn't entirely go off without a hitch. This news comes from a forum post on the Steam Community page for the popular grand strategy game from Firaxis Games.

A thread by Steam user Silver tells us that the game seems to be having some trouble with setting up multiplayer games, and by trouble we of course mean that the game isn't connecting to its servers, rendering the multiplayer mode completely unplayable without resorting to workarounds.

My friend can't connect to any multiplayer games. Extremely frustrating. We bought the game to play together and can't.

Multiple players in the thread are reporting the exact same issue, with the game either kicking them off the server after a few seconds or refusing to start a match completely. All players are getting at the moment is an error message after the game fails to retrieve host information from the player who started the lobby.

A game of Civilization VI with horsemen, cannoneers, and more visible

In another thread by Steam user nosTED, a Firaxis representative noted the complaints and says the studio is currently investigating the issue affecting a number of users. Until then, you can use the workaround provided by Steam user Sepis, which has been confirmed by other players to work:

1. Start other game, I used CS:GO but any MP cappable game should work. 2. Start CIV6. So now, both games are running. 3. Now you will be able to join lobby and play mp. 4. When you are in MP game, you can close that other game.

While this will allow you to play games with your friends, there might be another problem if you like teaming up with your mates; the ability to form teams is conspicuously absent from the game at time of writing, apart from a workaround you'll have to enable manually.

A Reddit user on the Civilization VI subreddit went on to datamine the game after people discovered the missing team feature and found a line in the code that states that the ability to form teams with players has been deactivated until the release of a Day 0 patch.

The Colosseum being constructed in Civilization VI

While this evidently didn't make it into the Day 0 patch, it's likely that this will be addressed sooner rather than later. One might wonder why the feature got delayed. Until then, you'll have to make do with verbal agreements to not backstab each other on sight.

Alternatively, you can do some fiddling with the game files to enable the ability to form teams, but do know that you're activating a feature that was deemed unready for the game's initial release date so it may very well be unstable.

Another feature that is conspicuously absent is Steam Workshop support. While the feature is advertised on the Steam Store page, the developers have stated earlier in development that the modding tools would be coming after the game's initial release.

Sid Meier's Civilization VI launched globally on October 21 and has since gone on to become third on the list of games with the most concurrent players currently.

Quick Take

Luckily I've not had any trouble with the game thus far, but I'm glad that the planned Civ LAN party got pushed back a week so they can patch the issues players are currently having with the game, though. The game itself is rather great, in my opinion, and I've spent most of my weekend playing it. 

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Chris Anderson
| Staff Writer

I've been playing games since I was just barely able to walk so I might as well write about them.

More Info About This Game
Learn More About Sid Meier's Civilization VI
Firaxis Games
2K Games
Release Date
October 21, 2016 (Calendar)
Strategy, 4X
Purchase (Some links may be affiliated)