Facebook Civilization game now called 'Civilization World', closed alpha starts Jan. 12

Civilization Network, Take-Two Interactive's first "social network game," will now go by the more global, less techie-sounding Civilization World. The Facebook title is expected sometime in 2011, and a closed alpha test will begin January 12.

Interested parties can apply now at the Civ World site, and they'll receive a confirmation email by January 10. Those who register will also receive a "special item" to display in their throne rooms. No word yet if plebs who are late to the party will be able to pay a couple bucks for that item when the game launches.

In his public address about the name change, Civ emperor Sid Meier also said that Civ World games will have a "well-defined beginning and end" and players will have "both a final goal to work towards, as well as short-term objectives to achieve as they play. The trophies you unlock with your triumphs will carry over from game to game, and you can show them off in your throne room." Okay, we're intrigued about a Facebook game -- time for some self-flagellation.

This article was originally published on Joystiq.