Get the complete GalCiv II saga including Galactic Civilizations II: Dread Lords, the expansion pack Dark Avatar, and the newest expansion pack Twilight of the Arnor!
User reviews: Mostly Positive (509 reviews)
Release Date: Dec 2, 2011

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Buy Galactic Civilizations® II

Packages that include this game

Buy Galactic Civilizations® Complete Pack

Includes 2 items: Galactic Civilizations® I: Ultimate Edition, Galactic Civilizations® II: Ultimate Edition

Buy Stardock Pack 2014

Includes 6 items: Sins of a Solar Empire®: Rebellion, Fallen Enchantress: Legendary Heroes, Galactic Civilizations® II: Ultimate Edition, Galactic Civilizations® I: Ultimate Edition, Demigod, The Political Machine 2012


Recommended By Curators

"GalCiv2 is often said to be the best 4X game ever made. A bit dated by now but still very good if you can overcome that."

About This Game

Get the complete Galactic Civilizations II saga including the acclaimed PC strategy game of the year Galactic Civilizations II: Dread Lords, the award winning expansion pack Dark Avatar, and the newest expansion pack Twilight of the Arnor!

Galactic Civilizations II: Dread Lords: Galactic Civilizations II is the sequel to 2003's hit turn-based strategy game of the same name. The player takes on the role of the leader of a space-faring civilization and must guide its expansion in a hostile galaxy. Gamers must balance their economic, technological, diplomatic, cultural, and military power to forge alliances, fight wars, and ultimately dominate the galaxy. The game is single-player and allows the player to play randomly generated galactic maps or play through a multi-mission campaign that tells the story of an ancient enemy called the Dread Lords.

Galactic Civilizations II: Dark Avatar: The expansion pack for Stardock's award-winning hit strategy game, Galactic Civilizations II: Dread Lords. This expansion pack not only adds the usual content that expansion packs tend to do such as new opponents, new units and a new campaign. It also greatly expands the game play of Galactic Civilizations II. New features include asteroid belts on the map that can be mined for resources, unique planets that require special technologies to colonize, spies to conduct sabotage and destabilization (or used to protect your worlds from the same), new types of diplomatic treaties, an enhanced artificial intelligence engine, and much more!

Galactic Civilizations II: Twilight of the Arnor: The year is 2227 and the fire of war is consuming the galaxy thanks to the manipulations of the evil Dread Lords. But the remaining factions, led by the humans, have a plan to rid the galaxy of the Dread Lords once and for all.

Expand the Galactic Civilizations II universe with Terror Stars, unique technology trees per civilization, Map editors, Custom Scenario makers, campaign editors, new types of ships, new planetary improvements, and much more!

Key features:

  • Beautiful 3D engine brings planets, stars, asteroids and ship battles to life.
  • Create custom 3D ships piece-by-piece with your Shipyard.
  • Play as any of a dozen unique civilizations or create your own.
  • Multiple paths to victory: Military conquest, cultural domination, political alliance, technological supremacy or ascension.
  • Addictive gameplay: Dynamic galaxies ranging from tiny to gigantic.
  • Superior multi-threaded artificial intelligence enables computer players to provide a challenge without having to cheat.
  • Put your scores online via the Metaverse and compete with players from around the world.
  • Fully moddable design enables players to create unique opponents, graphics and scenarios.
  • Advanced diplomacy enables players to trade, make treaties, alliances and more.

System Requirements

    • Operating system:Windows® XP SP3 / Vista™ SP2 / Windows® 7
    • Processor: Intel® Pentium® III 1 GHz (or AMD equivalent)
    • Memory: 512 MB (1 GB for Windows 7 / Vista)
    • Hard disk space: 2 GB
    • Video:64 MB DirectX 9.0c Compatible Video Card
    • Sound: DirectX® 9.0c Compatible Sound Card
    • DirectX®: DirectX® 9.0c

    • Other Requirements: Broadband Internet connection, also to activate this game you must create a Stardock account while launching the game on Steam.
Helpful customer reviews
3 of 3 people (100%) found this review helpful
7.2 hrs on record
Posted: November 2
As someone who has never really enjoyed the 4x genre, I've been pleasantly surprised by Galactic Civilizations II. The learning curve isn't too steep, but the game has an obvious depth. The ship creation is a fun little toy that I would liken to Spore's creature creation, but an entire game can be played without using it even once.
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
12.6 hrs on record
Posted: November 4
This is a well balanced game. It is varried and complicated but not so overwhelming that an average person would feel frustrated. After taking a few obligatory minutes to muddle through activation and learn the mechanics, this game should pose no issues.

Weather you like this game or not, the content matches its price. It is totally fair. This may not be an important feature, but its one that I appreciate!

If you like 4x, this game should be a no-brainer.
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
221.9 hrs on record
Posted: November 15
A great 4x space strategy game. The only real downside to this game is that it eats up memory for no good reason.
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
191.6 hrs on record
Posted: November 22
this game isn't bad for a 4x game, i enjoyed playing it quite a bit, but after you learn how to win, it becomes actually fairly easy to win. basically there are certain dominant strategies that take a long time to figure out, but once you've figured them out, you can reliably win every single game, even on the hardest setting. for instance, there is a certain overpowered laser in the 'evil' branch that if you rush you can defeat anyone for the rest of the game with minimal effort. there are also strategies of mass population growth early on leading to mass cash later on. this is kind of unavoidable in a game this complex, but i feel like there should be more varied choices rather than so many specific dominant strategies. still i got 200 hours out of it before i learned enough of those strategies to get bored with teh game, which is more than i can say for most games. the only 4x game i'd consider clearly superior to this game is sid meier's alpha centauri.
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3 of 4 people (75%) found this review helpful
53.8 hrs on record
Posted: November 1
awesome game never gets old. looking forward too GC III
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
38.2 hrs on record
Posted: November 21
Don't let the old UI or Graphics fool you this game is probably one of the best 4x game there is. I got this game during during the Humble Bundle and was very skeptical about this game at first glance. The first time I played this game I played it for 6 hours straight, it's like the Civilization franchise but in space (No not like Civilization: Beyond Earth kind of space).instead of just one planet. The main reason I got so into this game is probably because I loved Civilization V so much and this game reminded me of it but in a much grander scale. I reccommend 20 time over.

I rate 8/8.
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
74.0 hrs on record
Posted: November 15
Galactic Civilizations is by far one of my favorite games of all time. This game drew me in from the very start with it's immense levels of customization, almost every thing about the game can be changed without the use of mods. Don't like any of the races and factions in the vanilla game? Fine, you can make your own customizing even theit AI behavior. Once you get in the game the universe is open to you will you become a ruthless Imperium of xenophobes or race of pacifists and scientists the chioce is yours. The game really opens up once you meet another race, because that is when the UN of the universe is formed where everything is voted on, though this isystem is sometimes unfair as races with population bonuses will dominate the council forcing their agenda upon the rest of the members, though the choice is yours to leave, but if you do you lose the ability to trade meaning you'll have to new sources of income. The combat in this game is lacking as it is practically non-existent, in this game combat is usually a short scene of your ships engaging your enemies' and in the end revolves on who brought the biggest weapon. In the end though this game still draws me in regularly and keeps me in it for hours at a time and I'd recomend it to anyone who is looking for a good 4X game.
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2 of 3 people (67%) found this review helpful
21.2 hrs on record
Posted: November 1
Although it has a horrid activation system, the game itself is quite nice.
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3 of 6 people (50%) found this review helpful
50.3 hrs on record
Posted: October 26
A suprisingly deep game filled with so much customization. One of the only 4x games that has senate elections every few years. Not for everyone, but that's because those people enjoy banal casualized trite like Civilization V without the expansions. This game is concentrated meth, play at your own risk.
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4 of 8 people (50%) found this review helpful
12.5 hrs on record
Posted: November 16
Read lots of positive reviews about this one, and given the high metascore, I thought I'd give it a try. However the game lost all appeal once I realized that the tech progress is completely linear. You are presented with a huge tech tree, lots of different buildings and other improvements, but they're all completely boring. It's just like, +1 armor, +2 armor, +3 armor. 1+ economy, +2 economy, and so forth. NO nonlinearities, NO interesting synergies to be seen whatsoever, but these are what makes 4X games complex and interesting! The game mechanics really lack imagination, which is a problem I see with lots of Stardock titles. With Legendary Heroes, the lack of complex R&D mechanics is mitigated by the roleplaying system which manages to keep the game interesting. In Sins of a Solar Empire, the linear mechanics are fine because it's an action- and speed-oriented RTS title. But GalCiv, that's just as dull as it gets.
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1 of 3 people (33%) found this review helpful
5.3 hrs on record
Posted: November 22
Sorry GalCiv fans, but this game is super boring. I love Sid Maier's Civ series, and I've tried a couple of times to get into GalCiv, but it's just too dated, slow, and uninspiring. This is one of those titles where people who like it, like it a lot, and they'll gush about it and give it positive reviews, while the rest of us just shrug our shoulders, go "meh", and really don't see what the big deal is.

The graphics are not only dated, but that's to be expected, I can look past that, I mean I still play a lot of older games. But they're just too simplistic as well, even back in the day this would look crappy. The music and SFX are actually really horrible tho, so bad that it actually stands out lol.

There's a lot of content to the game, by that I mean in game mechanics, the tutorial is VERY large - maybe too large, but there's ZERO in game help, no tips suggesting what to do next or what steps you need to take to accomplish your mission. So you can waste a lot of time building and researching one strategy only to find out you need to take a completely different path /wasteoftime.

If you like this game, good for you, but for new players - there's better options out there, this game is just really, really boring. Pretty bad when even the Civ series seems more exciting than this space aged 4x game. If you want a fun 4x game that's actually exciting and draws you in, go try Endless Space or Sins of a Solar Empire.
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4 of 12 people (33%) found this review helpful
14.5 hrs on record
Posted: November 11
This game is tediously boring.

Par for the course of these kinds of games is that you begin with a very small area and number of units, etc. and must find your way to expansion. This is always relatively boring at first, but goes quickly since there is little to do and you can click through turns quickly.

The make or break point for this category of game is how tedious it becomes once significant expansion occurs. Do you have to click on everything in the map to see if anything needs your attention every turn or does the game notify you whenever something important happens? In this area, the game is mediocre. There are notifications when significant events happen, but I still feel the need to check up on every planet periodically to know how things are going.

A huge factor for every game's enjoyability is what aspects come into focus. Every game has good and bad parts. The question is, do the good parts shine and the bad parts fade into the background or do the bad parts constantly nag you until you can't enjoy the good parts anymore? Here the game is mediocre to bad. What you consider good or bad will depend on your gaming preferences and I don't care to take the time to elaborate, but suffice to say I was not impressed with the balance (despite some quite good features).

Another big factor is the interface which is mediocre to bad depending on your adaptability and preferences. It is never good when you spend as much time finding and clicking buttons as you do making real game changing decisions.

A significant factor that made me set this game aside was that the explanations of core game concepts was weak. I read the manual before I played and also went through the tutorials. Yet, as I played, I didn't really feel like I knew what was going on in many important aspects. Some people enjoy figuring out the mystery as they go along. I do for subtle aspects and tricks. I most certainly don't for the basic core concepts (especially when having taken the time to read the manual...).

There are also a handful of other minor points against enjoying this game but I won't bother to elaborate since this is already a long enough review. The important point is that with the huge number of games available for cheap today, this one just isn't worth the (extensive, tedious) time to play.

As I side note, I do not understand at all the number of positive reviews (almost all of which are little more than "YEAH!! AWESOME!! COOL!!! BEST GAME EVAH!!!!!"). I suppose it takes a certain kind of player to enjoy this title. Make sure you are one of them before you buy it.
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1 of 11 people (9%) found this review helpful
20.7 hrs on record
Posted: November 16
What a boring game. I prefer Sins of a Solar Empire : Rebellion which is also a 4X sci fi strategy game but it is played real time.
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2 of 15 people (13%) found this review helpful
2.1 hrs on record
Posted: November 4
So I admit I got this game looking for a good modern version of Masters of Orion. I was very disappointed. The game mechanics are so complicated that I have had a very difficult time of figuring them out and even then I do not enjoy them. I'll probably keep playing this game to see if it gets more enjoyable through time and experience so that my money isn't wasted but I am not optimistic about it.
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0 of 15 people (0%) found this review helpful
0.5 hrs on record
Posted: November 9
You have to want to play this game. Could not even activate this game without jump through hoops.
Very complicated game. Not worth my time to try to figure it out. If I didn't get it as an extra title in a humble bundle I'd be ♥♥♥♥ed about having spent any amount of money on this thing that pretends to be a game but seems to just be a crappy DRM experiment.

Hardcore Civilization Sim people might like this game but anyone else should run like hell.
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0 of 25 people (0%) found this review helpful
3.1 hrs on record
Posted: November 5
Boring as all hell, go play C&C Generals, that's a real strategy game
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1 of 31 people (3%) found this review helpful
10.9 hrs on record
Posted: November 5
not good because it's bad
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2.5 hrs on record
Posted: November 21
cant get the serial number at the moment but looking at game play when i get into the game i cant wit to play
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1.1 hrs on record
Posted: November 25
This game puts Civ Beyond Eart to shame .. seriously
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29 of 36 people (81%) found this review helpful
10.8 hrs on record
Posted: June 9
This is easily one of the most engrossing, deepest and most importantly the most fun strategy game ever made. Easy to lose a day to this one. A must have, especially if you're waiting for the price of GalCiv III to go down!
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