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The latest installment of one of the highest-rated strategy series of all time, Galactic Civilizations III challenges players to build an empire that dominates the galaxy through conquest, diplomacy, cultural hegemony, or scientific research.
Release Date: Mar 27, 2014
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Early Access Game

Get instant access and start playing; get involved with this game as it develops.

Note: This Early Access game may or may not change significantly over the course of development. If you are not excited to play this game in its current state, then you may want to wait until the game progresses further in development. Learn more

What the developers have to say:

Why Early Access?

“Stardock has always believed in extensive pre-release testing periods for our games. Involving our fans earlier in the process allows us to gather crucial gameplay, design, and balance feedback. Getting the game out on thousands of machines is a key part of hardware compatibility testing for us as well.”

How long will this game be in Early Access?

“Galactic Civilizations III will be in Early Access until May 2015, according to our current schedule (which is of course subject to change). However, the existing Alpha will become Beta in late summer 2014, which will coincide with two things: the game being something approaching fun, and a price drop to the regular $49.99.”

How is the full version planned to differ from the Early Access version?

“Well, for one thing, unlike the Alpha it’ll be fun. As of this writing (June 2014, Alpha 2), the core game functionality is working – you can play multiplayer, research technology, colonize planets, fight wars, and design your own custom ships – but we’re still building far more sophisticated AI, the combat viewer, diplomacy, resources, pirates, alternate victory conditions, and much more. These features will be added in during the Early Access period as they are developed.”

What is the current state of the Early Access version?

“As of Alpha 2, the game still isn’t fun. Multiplayer, colonization, planet development, research, and ship design all work, but the AI is extremely limited and we’re still missing key features like diplomacy and the combat viewer.”

Will the game be priced differently during and after Early Access?

“You may have noticed that only the $99.99 version is available for sale right now. That’s not the final price, though it is a good deal for hardcore GalCiv fans since it comes with all future DLC and expansions forever. We priced it that way because we knew the alpha wasn’t going to be fun, and we frankly didn’t want anyone but our hardcore fans playing it because we knew it would disappoint.

Once we hit beta (late this summer) we’ll drop the price to its regular $49.99. One of our criteria for declaring the game “beta” is that it be at least somewhat fun, so we’ll be excited to welcome more players in at that time.”

How are you planning on involving the Community in your development process?

“We’ve already gotten a ton of valuable feedback from our community, both on design/gameplay issues as well as help in tracking down bugs. We actively monitor the forums both on Steam and at http://www.galciv3.com, and we do weekly livestreams at http://www.twitch.tv/stardock where lead designer Paul Boyer shows off internal builds (when they’re stable enough) and answers community questions as well as soliciting feedback on specific design points that we’re actively working on.”
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Notice: 64-bit Windows Required

You must be running 64-bit Windows 7 or later to play Galactic Civilizations III. This requirement allows us to create the largest, most advanced, strategy game possible.

Buy Galactic Civilizations® III - Founder's Elite Edition


Recent updates View all (6)

Alpha 3, Patch 1 (v0.31) Released

July 10th, 2014

We've got a patch for you today, bringing you more multiplayer map sizes, new music, and a boatload of bug fixes.

Just fire up your Steam client to download the patch automatically. If you're not seeing the update, try restarting your Steam client.

This is just an update patch, of course; we've got a bunch of awesome cooking for the next major update that we think *all* of our Founders will enjoy.

Happy conquering, and we'll see you on the stream tomorrow!

For a full change log, please visit: http://steamcommunity.com/app/226860/discussions/0/46476691016065416/

2 comments Read more

Live Q&A on Dev Stream, Fridays at Noon Pacific

June 26th, 2014

We’re streaming and taking questions every Friday at noon Pacific time (3pm Eastern, 9pm CET) and we’d love for you to join us on the official Stardock Twitch.tv channel.

Join us every Friday for the latest on Galactic Civilizations III, from discussions of upcoming features to conversations about why it’s designed the way it is and sneak peeks of upcoming builds.

If you can’t make the stream, you can always post questions to the Stardock forums or Tweet them at us, and we’ll try to answer them on the air.

You can catch up on previous streams on the official Stardock YouTube channel; we’ve been at this for a while and they’re all archived there. Barring any technical hiccups, the weekly stream tends to be uploaded and ready for viewing around 3pm Pacific on our YouTube channel the day it airs.

Hope to see you on Twitch, and thank you for your support!

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Founder's Elite Edition - LIMITED TIME OFFER!

Become an Elite Founder and get special perks!

  • A lifetime subscription to all GalCiv III DLC and expansion packs
  • Create your legacy* – Suggest a star name and get special thanks credit
  • Founders' Vault* – Access exclusive art, music and more from the development team
  • Forum badge* – Display with your account on the official Stardock forums

About the Game

Galactic Civilizations III is the premier space strategy game. The latest installment of one of the highest-rated strategy series of all time, created by the original developers at Stardock, Galactic Civilizations III challenges players to build an empire that dominates the galaxy through conquest, diplomacy, cultural hegemony, or scientific research.

The stars are yours, if you can balance the demands of expansion, exploration, diplomacy, and all-but-inevitable galactic warfare. Careful strategy, not twitch reflexes, lead to victory in this turn-based strategy epic.

Online multi-player comes to Galactic Civilizations for the first time in Galactic Civilizations III. Conquer the galaxy alongside your friends or battle for supremacy in titanic clashes.

Feature List for Alpha (v0.30)

  • Play as the Terran Alliance, Drengin Empire, Altarian Resistance, or Iridium Corporation
  • Single-player sandbox or 2-4 player Internet multiplayer
  • Play on randomly generated maps (Tiny to Large; Conquest Victory only)
  • Colonize and improve habitable planets, research new technologies, and build fleets of ships
  • Focus your priorities with the new production wheel system
  • New ideology system – Gain unique bonuses by following pragmatic, benevolent, or merciless paths
  • Explore the galaxy to uncover hidden riches in space anomalies
  • Construct Starbases to expand your influence
  • Defeat your enemies by invading their planets
  • Design your own ships with the Shipyard

Future Features

  • Additional races - Play as the Yor Singularity, Thalan Contingency, Iconian Refuge, or Krynn Syndicate
  • Interactive map – Explore black holes, mysterious nebulae, and ancient artifacts as you vie for control of valuable planets and resources
  • Choose your path – Dominate the galaxy through military force, diplomatic intrigue, cultural hegemony, or scientific research
  • Design your starfleet – Powerful ship designer lets players design ships from scratch or take advantage of pre-made blueprints
  • Reimagined combat – Set your strategy and watch titanic clashes between grand fleets unfold in real-time
  • Diplomacy - Interact, trade with, and threaten other races to accomplish your goals
  • Best-in-class AI – 64-bit game engine allows incredibly complex artificial intelligence routines, which grow smarter over time as the AI learns from every game it plays
  • Single-player Campaign - Available at final release, the campaign will continue the epic storyline of the Galactic Civilizations series
  • And lots more!

* Requires that you register your game during the period when the Founder's Elite Edition is being offered. To do so, simply install the Alpha, run the game and login/create a Stardock account.

System Requirements

    • OS: 64-bit Windows 8.1 / 8 / 7
    • Processor: Dual-Core Processor
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: 512 MB DirectX 10.1 Video Card (AMD Radeon HD5x00 Series / Nvidia GeForce 500 Series / Intel HD 4000 or later)
    • DirectX: Version 10
    • Network: Broadband Internet connection
    • Hard Drive: 3 GB available space
    • Sound Card: DirectX Compatible Sound Card
    • Additional Notes: A Stardock account is required to register and play this game. Minimum supported resolution is 1280x800.
    • Processor: Intel Core i5 Processor or Equivalent
    • Memory: 6 GB RAM
    • Graphics: 1 GB DirectX 10.1 Video Card
    • Hard Drive: 5 GB available space
Helpful customer reviews
883 of 1,217 people (73%) found this review helpful
69 products in account
2 reviews
16.0 hrs on record
Early Access Review
*Updated July 2, 2014*

[NOTE; This isn't so much a review of the game and more of an... 'opinion piece' for lack of a better word. The game is far too early in development to begin making a rational and justified review. Also, as a very large fan of the previous 4 games (Galactic Civilizations 1 & 2 on the OS/2 in the 90's, and Galactic Civilizations 1 & 2 in the 2000's) my opinion is likely biased to some extent.]

If you were not a fan of the previous game(s), don't squander your money on something you will almost certainly not enjoy. 4X games and Galactic Civilizations are an aquired taste, and if you haven't played earlier iterations you'll be wasting your money buying the game at the moment. Buy "Galactic Civilizations II: Ultimate Edition" here on Steam for a few dollars to see if the series interests you.

At the moment, the game is in alpha testing, and as such is woefully inadequate as a game in and of itself. Almost every mechanic, from diplomacy to planetary invasions, are either not in the game or are present in only the most basic way. If you buy this, you do so knowing that it will not be 'fun' for several months at the very least. Do so only if you truly wish to aid stardock with feedback and testing. (EDIT 2; the game has recently been updated to include the ship editor. It kicks ♥♥♥) (EDIT 3; Several features, including shipyards, resources, game options and larger maps have been released! The AI has also been updated significantly)

That being said, the alpha is totally playable despite its limited set of features and options, and while it obviously has many bugs, it is nevertheless stable for prolonged periods. It's not overly fun, but then again it's not supposed to be. (EDIT 3; I can say now with some confidence that a regular person will have a good time playing the game)

So yeah; buy this (July 2 2014, Alpha build 3 as of writing) if you want to help out the devs or if you're a long-time fan looking for a better long-term deal, not if you're looking for an overly enjoyable experience. If you're someone with the latter inclination, wait for release day or Beta access in the summer (August-september).

EDIT; it's worth repeating here that you get all the DLC that will ever be made for the game if you pay the $100 asking price. They currently have 4 major expansions, alongside several smaller DLC's planned for undetermined release dates up until the year 2020. If the quality of previous Stardock DLC holds up (Think Twilight of the Arnor, Legendary Heroes etc...) then this will ultimately be a very good long-term investment.

EDIT 2; Stardock has recently updated the game to include the ship designer. To put it mildly, even in its current, rough and unfinished state, it is better than any other ship editor I've played outside of dedicated modeling programs like Maya. The game has taken a big step towards having my review changed to a general-user "Recommended".

EDIT 3; Another major update has been released by Stardock. To make a long story shot, the game has been massively improved. The AI has been upgraded heavily, so it is now capable of actually playing! Not to mention the inclusion of a novel new ship building mechanic (shipyards), on-map galactic resources, a revamped planet generation system, a massively-expanded tech tree, basic effects, an overhaul of the planet and production screens, race heterogenity and several other things. I suspect I will be forced to change my review to a "recommended" next update, as the game is getting progressively much better!
Posted: March 27th, 2014
Was this review helpful? Yes No
20 of 25 people (80%) found this review helpful
21 products in account
2 reviews
293.3 hrs on record
Early Access Review
Still in Alpha stage but yet still very enjoyable to play even to find bugs and help get things fixed. The shipyard Alpha is bit choppy and has a slight learning curve but once you learn how to use the tools it's very addictiing to build ships. Alpha 3 update yet to be released is certain to make game play and shipyard building much better, In regard to shipyard alone I have found I can build almost any style Star Ship from TV and Movies plus any from my own imagination. Ships looks awsome! This game is worth getting just for the shipyeard alone!

My prediction is Galactic Civilizations III will be Game of the Year 2015-2016.
Posted: June 23rd, 2014
Was this review helpful? Yes No
13 of 15 people (87%) found this review helpful
13 products in account
2 reviews
627.7 hrs on record
Early Access Review
This will be a great game it is in Alpha stage right now so it is hard to recommend it the next Alpha release should be in the next week. Alpha 3 which will add alot of new stuff to it. I recommend waiting to get it in Beta or in it`s RC form!! with it`s DLC content and exspanions packs that will follow,... It will be a game to Play for a very long time!
Posted: June 22nd, 2014
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23 of 39 people (59%) found this review helpful
63 products in account
1 review
3.8 hrs on record
Early Access Review
For everyone who has not played any Galactic Civ game before I do recommend buying GC 1 or 2 preferably 2 as it is newer to get the feel for the game.

On to GC 3, as stated this is an ALPHA, if you do not like playing a game that is not complete don't, I honestly did not buy this for the Alpha, the Alpha was a bonus, I personally bought it because it gives all the DLCs and expansion packs that will ever be made, so in the long run it was cost effective.

Overall the alpha is above my expectations. The game runs smooth on my laptop which is about 1.5 years old. 3rd gen i5, quad core, 6 GB ram, Intel HD 4000 graphics. So it runs extremely well on a medium tier laptop. On my tower which is about 5 years old. Pentium dual core, 6 GB ram, 512 mb graphics card, it runs just as well as on my laptop. (Note tower was running 64-bit Vista, laptop was running 64-bit Windows 7.)

If you want to save a little money in the long run and get all the DLCs and expansion packs and the game for 99.99, I suggest you do it there are also a few extra goodies you get for buying the Founder's elite edition, read the full game description for details. You are NOT required to play or even touch the alpha, I have played it twice and honestly I am so good, from my long history with GC series that the AI usually doesn't last more than 20 turns, since there is nothing more to do other than wipe them out, the alpha can get quite boring, quite quickly. Again you are NOT required to play or even touch the alpha.
Posted: March 31st, 2014
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6 of 8 people (75%) found this review helpful
5 products in account
1 review
44.8 hrs on record
Early Access Review
It is a great relaxing game that will be fun for hundreds of hours. With new content coming regularly this gamw is a must have. ;)
Posted: May 16th, 2014
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