Galactic Civilizations III is the largest strategy sandbox ever made. Start with a single world and expand across the galaxy through diplomacy, trade, cultural hegemony, or military conquest in this single-player or multiplayer 4X strategy game. How will you rule your galaxy?
User reviews:
Mostly Positive (204 reviews) - 71% of the 204 user reviews in the last 30 days are positive.
Mostly Positive (5,131 reviews) - 77% of the 5,131 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date: May 14, 2015

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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.

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Buy Stardock Bundle 2016

Includes 8 items: Galactic Civilizations III, Sorcerer King, Sins of a Solar Empire®: Rebellion, Fallen Enchantress: Legendary Heroes, Dead Man's Draw, Galactic Civilizations® II: Ultimate Edition, Galactic Civilizations® I: Ultimate Edition, Demigod

Buy Galactic Civilizations III - Mercenaries Expansion Pack

WEEK LONG DEAL! Offer ends August 1


Recent updates View all (58)

July 27

New Lost Treasures DLC for Galactic Civilizations III - Now Available!

Discover the Secrets of Long Forgotten Worlds in the new Lost Treasures DLC for Galactic Civilizations III!
Guide your empire into a new age of prosperity as you handle brand new unexpected events and challenges

New Colony Events
As you colonize planets, new colonization events will challenge your people and your integrity. Each new event provides new Ideology choices that may award unique planetary improvements and ship components. Some of these events appear later in the game, so keep your eyes open!

New Improvements
During your explorations, you will uncover new and unique planetary improvements that may function differently based on your Ideology choice. Choose wisely - you can only build one improvement of each type per empire!

New Ship Components
Discover dozens of new and powerful ship components like the "Ancient Singularity Cannon", "Subspace Splinter", and the "Hyper Gate Core". Your Ideology Choice may affect how these new components work on your ship. Work fast against your enemies - each of these ancient treasures is unique and you can only have one in a fleet at a time.

Get the new "Lost Treasures" DLC on Steam or at Stardock.

8 comments Read more

July 26

Galactic Civilizations III v1.81 Update Released

We've been working on some new improvements to the AI and UI to improve the game experience as well as squishing bugs. Read below for the latest changes.

Increased AI Aggression
Ai is more likely to engage you multiple times in a single turn.
New notification UI
We've updated notification system to make it more useful and informative. Notifications messages now appear as scrolling list on the left-hand side of the screen. Notifications can be filtered based on priority or disabled off in the game options menu.
Better load times
Starting a new game is significantly faster.

  • Improved level loading time
  • Updated notification system. Notifications now appear on the left-hand side of the screen rather than the tab on the right. Notifications can be filtered based on priority or turned off in the game options menu.
  • Ai is more likely to engage you multiple times in a single turn.
  • Fixed occasionally blank battle prediction text on the Battle Preview window.
  • Fixed an issue preventing Malevolent "Eager" traits bonus from show up in tooltips.
  • Make the "Can not afford" and "Can afford" colors on tier 1 mercenaries more distinct.
  • Replaced "Tariff Stations" tech specialization with "Trade Tariffs" in all tech trees.
  • Fixed issue preventing Assault Carriers from using High Capacity Carrier Modula.
  • Fixing a case where sometimes a player is blocked from attacking an asteroid it had previously attacked and blown up.
  • Added collapse and expand buttons to each header in the campaigns/scenarios list, to allow collapse scenarios for that campaign. This will allow us to add more campaigns in the future.
  • Built units now start with full movement points.
  • Mining colonies being attacked or culture flipped now give an alert instead of displaying the battle confirmation dialog.
  • The rebellion status of a planet is now properly cleared upon successful invasion
  • Fixed a save crash in multiplayer.
  • Fixed several bugs that would make the audio stop playing in mid-game.
  • Fixed a rare infinite loop while looking for patrol tile when the ship has no battle rating power.
  • Fixed an a infinite tooltip loop.
  • Custom maps now properly randomize anomalies if the option is checked.
  • Added "Planets Annexed" to match reports
  • "Random" opponents can be assigned to teams.
  • Ship descriptions now remove multiple spaces
  • The email address entry field now gets keyboard focus when the Registration dialog is opened.
  • Updated the Mercenary ship "The Wraith" to make it clear it gives a fleet-wide buff to repair.
  • Updated Mercenary ship "The Willow" to have a Jamming of 75% from 50% to match its description. Also changed the tooltip from Evasion to Jamming.

7 comments Read more


“The new gold standard in 4X space strategy”
9/10 – GameWatcher

“Such a wealth of victory conditions and customization options that the experience feels new with every playthrough.”
8.6/10 – IGN

“A mix of familiar mechanics and new ideas that can keep both fans and newcomers occupied for a frighteningly long period of time.”
9/10 – Softpedia

About This Game

Never the same game twice, Galactic Civilizations III is the largest strategy sandbox ever made. Each new game offers an array of options as you set it up - choose your map size, abundance of planets and resources, frequency of events, and more for a unique play experience every time. Galactic Civilizations III also removes linear victory conditions and offers you multiple objectives that you can choose to pursue in order to win, such as military conquest, cultural domination, technological ascension, or political alliances. The new multiplayer capabilities also allow you to expand your challenges and fights beyond an AI in order to face off against fellow players. All of this, topped with a rich and in-depth custom ship designer ensure an immersive and exciting experience as you decide how to rule your galaxy.


  • Never the same game twice: Play in the ultimate sandbox where each game has a unique map, worlds, and challenges to face -- all on a massive scale. Play against 16 to 100 opponents.
  • Multiple paths to victory: Win through military conquest, cultural domination, technological ascension, or political alliance.
  • Story-based campaign: Get brought up to date on the 20-year story arc behind the rise of humanity in the 23rd century.
  • Massive technology tree: Research a technology tree with immense breadth and depth. Each playable faction has their own unique specializations. Your choice determines how you play and win.
  • Faction & Ship Customization: Create a civilization with its own look, ships, technologies, and even options for how the AI will use them.


  • Multiplayer: For the first time, Galactic Civilizations is a multiplayer game with full support for custom civilizations, saved multiplayer games, and much more.
  • New Battle System: Assign your ships specific roles to play in combat. You can now view fleet battles in a cinematic style to see your designs in action.
  • New Colony Manager: The location of a planetary improvement now matters. Adjacency bonuses and planetary resources make a major impact on what a planet is strong (or weak) at accomplishing.
  • Planetary Governors: Utilize individual planetary leaders to govern your worlds, deciding what improvements to build and when, which leaves you to focus on larger strategic goals.

System Requirements

    • OS: 64-bit Windows 10 / 8.x / 7
    • Processor: 1.8 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo / AMD K10 Dual-Core
    • 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
    • Storage: 12 GB available space
    • Sound Card: DirectX Compatible Sound Card
    • OS: 64-bit Windows 10 / 8.x / 7
    • Processor: 2.3 GHz Intel Core i5 Processor or Equivalent
    • Memory: 6 GB RAM
    • Graphics: 1 GB DirectX 10.1 Video Card
    • DirectX: Version 10
    • Network: Broadband Internet connection
    • Storage: 15 GB available space
    • Sound Card: DirectX Compatible Sound Card
Customer reviews
Customer Review system updated! Learn more
Mostly Positive (204 reviews)
Mostly Positive (5,131 reviews)
Recently Posted
( 5.4 hrs on record )
Posted: July 27
Love it!
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Chris Penrod
( 44.0 hrs on record )
Posted: July 27
While a little strange for a 4x game it is definately fun. I believe that the first half of the game is the most fun and the combat looks cool, but unless you become a warmongering leader it can grind to a hault in the second half.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
( 74.9 hrs on record )
Posted: July 27
A decent 4x game, a bit clunky and nowhere near as good as Gal Civ 2 Dread Lords
Helpful? Yes No Funny
( 98.1 hrs on record )
Posted: July 27
I like the game but it seems to have alot of bugs. (sometimes it wont start, like it is caught in a loop; it crashes on startup sometimes also; and lately im starting to see'' display driver has stopped responding and has recovered''. when this happens everything feezes or goes black. I'd like to solve these issues because i do like playing the game.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
( 47.0 hrs on record )
Posted: July 27
I wasn't really a big fan of turn based 4x games until I played this. It's got me hooked good and proper! The sheer size of the game (insane maps) and all the different strategies and ways to win make it a real treat.

My favourite strategy is building up a massive economy and then flat out buying all the research I want from my opponents. Of course, if the United Planets get wind of this they normally try to take 25% of my earnings for themselves. Long live democracy!


If possible I would totally buy my way into leadership of the U.P.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
( 43.4 hrs on record )
Posted: July 26
A nice game, but nothing spectacular. Here's my breakdown.

Endless ship design customization
Smart AI
Pretty good diplomacy options (compared to competitors)

Incredibly boring ship design customization
Zero combat control

Overall, this game caters to those who are already big Gal Civ fans, but it lacks the depth to hold other people for too long.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
( 289.0 hrs on record )
Posted: July 26
latest patch. when i clck on shipyard , it doesnt go to clicked shipyard anymore really anoying
Helpful? Yes No Funny
( 7.5 hrs on record )
Posted: July 26
If you played the old games, no point in getting this. No new experiences to be had.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Flying Rainbow Potato
( 58.2 hrs on record )
Posted: July 26
Nice game, but advanced. Play it if you have time for learning it.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Guy Fieri
( 15.7 hrs on record )
Posted: July 25
Ehh... I'm not paying $20 for a squirrel.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Most Helpful Reviews  In the past 30 days
21 of 22 people (95%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
Not Recommended
9.1 hrs on record
Posted: July 3
As a big fan of Gal Civ I and II, I was excited for the third. This game is not like those. The originals were epic and complete strategy games with a charming miniamilst indie-style. Part 3 is actually a DLC purchase simulation game, where gameplay consists of buying and downloading tons of nickle-and-dime DLC, which trickles out every so often. The original game is so short and shallow, I thought I had completed the tutorial only to discover the campaign was over. This game was just a shell onto which endless DLC is piled. Features that were in the original games were removed from the third, and repackaged as DLC (with some features still missing). Stardock once held the title as "most trusted developer" in my book, but things have changed at the studio, and their products are absolutely awful rip-offs now, and Stardock should be considered a scam company. (See also, "Elemental" for another example of a rip-off game from these developers).
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
23 of 27 people (85%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
Not Recommended
285.3 hrs on record
Posted: June 28
I really love this game but is it at all possible for you guys to fix the crashing? i mean sometimes i wait 5 minutes before realizing the game will never catch up i understand the game is massive and even more so depending on the size of the map but when a small sized game can last 24+ hours i expect to be able to sit and play for at least 2 hours before the game completely ♥♥♥♥♥ itself and crashes. Also it would be really nice if you guys were a lot more honest about the ram demand because if you have yet to purchase this game and you run with even 16 gb of ram the game cant wait to crash. This game is definately worth the purchase what little i can actually play before it crashes. The crashes have become even worse now with even more ♥♥♥♥ to populate the screen. Can we focus on one thing at a time i do not think we really needed mining facilities on the dead rocks but who the hell cares lets continue to add more and more ♥♥♥♥ so the game will never work unless your sporting 64gb of ram. I cannot at this time recommend purchasing this game for in its current state it is infact unplayable.
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14 of 15 people (93%) found this review helpful
Not Recommended
357.9 hrs on record
Posted: July 3
I'll preface this by saying I have purchased all of the GC games and like them all. The one thing that has become more obvious is the tendency towards releasing a very early, base game and using DLC to spice it up and make it seem more interesting. A "Season Pass" is the standard it seems now....

This game, even after a year of being out and having been patched all the way up to v1.8, still has major bugs and memory leak issues. Any of the larger maps are not able to be played to completion due to memory issues and performance lag. The machine I have has 16gb of memory and still has issues. One bug (destroy a planet) has been in the support forums since early 2015 and still hasn't been addressed. The keyboard shortcuts and game documentation leave much to be desired. Not enough shortcuts and too much repetitive "point/click" items.
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27 of 40 people (68%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
Not Recommended
50.8 hrs on record
Posted: June 28
Well... I bougt the game because of that i loved Gal Civ 2.

Gal.Civ 3 is perfect if you love chrashes and repeating pointless stuff. And of course, insted of fixing the game they make DLC, lots of DLC.

Because of the abusing of DLC Stardoc is now on the black list togeather with Paradox.
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10 of 10 people (100%) found this review helpful
Not Recommended
14.6 hrs on record
Posted: July 4
bought this game for 40 Euros and half of races are not playable, because i need to buy dlc?

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9 of 10 people (90%) found this review helpful
Not Recommended
23.1 hrs on record
Posted: July 3
This is an amazing 4x space turn-based strategy with some depth and an AI that isn't asleep at the wheel. Unfortunatley I've finished 1/4th of the games I've started in single player and none of the multiplayer games.

I got this game for myself an my wife, we love the Civilization series and I had played previous Gal Civs before, we picked it up and got hooked. But then the game crashed, eh that happens no worries. But it keeps crashing, we've jumped through the various tech support hoops and its still unstable as the day we bought it.

Specific and unavoidable parts of the game seem to force the game to crash on a regular basis, like someone defying the U.P. Vote in multiplayer seems to always kill the game for myself and my wifes copy independently of each other. This, along witht he trouble shooting we tried, tells me the game is faulty.

tl;dr crash happy fun 4x game.
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6 of 7 people (86%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
Not Recommended
506.7 hrs on record
Posted: July 2
This game is really addictive and fun, but buggy and unstable. I keep starting games and right as they get fun I have to abandon them because they keep crashing to desktop. Specific random events trigger this, one I pinpointed to a shipyard being destroyed, and I just encountered it again after wiping out the last Klingon planet. Often if a downloadable ship belonging to a different faction than the one you're playing is chosen, the game crashes too. And that's not counting the litany of weird little quarks, like having the starbases randomly revert to the oldest, worst kind of constructor ships when they "order" their upgrades.

I would love to recommend this game. It's a nice, quiet 4x afternoon with a lot of beautiful custom ships from the modding community, but it's just too buggy right now. Hopefully the product managers let the devs focus on stabilizing the game instead of trying to pump out more DLC for 5 bucks a pop.

Stabilize the game guys, then I'll buy the DLC, I promise. Until then, meh.
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3 of 3 people (100%) found this review helpful
Not Recommended
165.7 hrs on record
Posted: July 10
Played many hours of GCII, but this one leaves a LOT to be desired. I know there are fanboys on here that swear this game is great and it's easy, and it's the greatest game ever made, but they are obviously cheating, or modifying the game files.
For the rest of us, it comes down to the AI having a HUGE advantage over the human player, even on easy. Resources, FoW, manufacturing, etc. You HAVE to research weapons, armor, sensors, and other military techs from the start, and you must produce ships every turn as soon as you can.
On easy turn 800 or so, the power indicator shows AI having 32000 and I have 2800. This is after researching all of the available weapons and armor tech and putting out over 100 ships. There is NO way a human player can do this - without cheating. It's imp[ossible to put out 32000 points of ships. Survey and sensors are the same way - the AI can and will move faster than you, and make a bee-line for you even though it shouldn't be able to catch you, or to see you. Don't waste the time on this game, unless you want to use cheat codes or modify the game files.
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3 of 3 people (100%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
Not Recommended
140.2 hrs on record
Posted: July 21
I like it, but it has alot of issues in its current state, I would like to see more free content/features out

Reasonable AI
Alot of customization is possible
Decent community content
Massive maps are truly massive

Gets sluggish even with 16GB RAM as the game goes on
DLC DLC DLC DLC...base game is just that, basic, pay to unlock features
Unstable, make sure you enable auto-save to be frequent, I've lost alot of progress in games
Unless you got a powerhouse machine, it seems biggest maps will bring your PC to a stop
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
Not Recommended
9.2 hrs on record
Posted: July 19
Everything in this game feels like it takes forever to accomplish. It takes tons of turns to move ships around the map and tons of time to research and construct things. The AI allies keep begging for things. Combat animation is very simplistic and the visuals in general don't seem all that different from Gal Civ II. There are times the game gets bugged/stuck in wait mode during the time the computer players are taking their turn so I have to quit to the main menu and reload a saved game.
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