Facebook Civilization app starts alpha testing

God-gaming god, Sid Meier has announced that a testing programme for the Facebook reboot of the Civilization franchise will start on January 12th.

Renamed Civ World, the world-conquering game is looking for teams of friends to join a closed alpha round of testing as part of the development process and is asking groups to register using its sign up page.

If you're wondering why you'll need to round up your buddies to get in on the testing, Sid has the answer: "To win in Civ World," he writes, "you’ll need to collaborate with your friends in order to do well in the game and become ruler of the world, so in our early Alpha testing, we’re grouping people together to simulate how the game will work when it’s available to the world at large.

"In the final game, you’ll be able to sign up individually (although we’ll love it if you invite your friends), but to participate in Closed Alpha, you’ll have to enter as a team. It’s up to you how you organise your testing team."

Those teams can be made up of anything between five and 50 people and each will need a team name and captain. Successful applicants will be notified on or after January 10th.

Despite the fact the testers are being asked to sign up as teams of friends, Meier points out that you'll probably end up falling out at some point. "Civ World is a game of shifting alliances and powers, with civilizations and factions rising and falling all the time," he says. "You may not always be playing on the same side as your teammates - in fact, you're just as likely to be their opponents!"

Places on the testing programme will be limited at first but Meier says the size of the Alpha will be ramped up over the coming weeks to include more and more teams.

For more details check out the game's Facebook page.