Civilization VI will launch October 21st, 2K and Firaxis announced today, celebrating the long-running series' 25th anniversary.

The new instalment in the venerable 4X strategy franchise brings "many exciting new elements" to the series, said lead designer Ed Beach.

Cities can now expand across multiple tiles; units can now actively engage in research to advance civilisations' progress; and support units can now be combined with other units to form "corps" units with multiple abilities.

Diplomacy has also been expanded into a dynamic system, while new multiplayer modes and tutorial systems are designed to add an optional, more accessible layer to the notoriously complex game.

The Civilization franchise has sold over 34 million units since its launch, and has formed a significant part of PC gaming culture.

Civilization VI launches on October 21st exclusively for PC.