One of the first design calls in a civ game is: do we have a board with territories? and if yes, which shape?
recently, many brilliant civ games just went for the "no territories" option (again, the brilliant Through the Ages, but also the smart recent Innovation card-civ game). That kind of approach, imho, works better with a more abstract, card based, game.
Here, we already started with movement and warfare and miniatures in mind, so a map was mandatory.
The big choice then is: exagones (big squares like in the recent Civ game from FFG may work, but really look ankward in XXI century games, and also they're less flexible, especially on small scales) or more realistic, irregular size territories (a la Small World, even if it's not a civ game I bet you're all familiar with that board).
We went immediately for the exagons, since they're flexible, and a game called at that time "civilocube" doesn't needed to look realistic, at least at that time.
In the picture, you can see the image of one "homeland", starting territories for players. They haven't changed a lot since then, actually (except for graphic improvement).
More about what you see in the exagons in the next article, along with some game mechanic details.
That's all for now since today I am a bit in a hurry :-)
Hola a todos