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 (142 reviews) - 76% of the 142 user reviews in the last 30 days are positive.
Mostly Positive (5,247 reviews) - 77% of the 5,247 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.

Buy Galactic Civilizations III

Packages that include this game

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


Recent updates View all (60)

August 23

New Campaign, Ship Parts and Styles in The Altarian Prophecy DLC

Face Down Enemies and Forge New Alliances in The Altarian Prophecy DLC
Check out the new campaign and explore new ship parts and styles for more customization

New Campaign
Discover the story of the alliance between mankind and the Altarians! Spanning 3 missions, you must do whatever it takes to overcome the Dominion of the Korx and their mysterious masters, the Drath.

New Ship Styles
Customize your ships with classic ship styles! This DLC includes the Drath and Korx styles.

New Ship Parts
Explore dozens of classic ship parts and build some of your favorite Galactic Civilizations II ships.

The Altarian Prophecy DLC is now available over at Steam or Stardock.

10 comments Read more

August 22

Galactic Civilizations III v1.82 Update Released

Welcome to our August update.  We've focused on addressing crashes, stuck turns, issues with the notification system, and bugs.   Please read below for info.

UI Stability improvements: We've increased the number of UI widgets by 4x. Extreme games (e.g large maps, hundreds of fleets, etc.) will now be more stable.  We have also fixed numerous issues with the new notification system.

Gameplay: We've fixed a ship trading exploit and several gameplay bugs.  In addition, we have made some treaties free for alliance members.

Rise of the Terrans DLC: Updated campaign to use a new United Earth  "classic" ship style that better represents ships of that galactic era.  As part of that change, you now can select United Terrans ship style for your custom races and choose from over twenty new "classic" ship parts for your ship designs.  

Change Log
  • Increased the number of UI widgets by 4x. Extreme games (e.g large maps, hundreds of fleets, etc.) will be now be more stable.
  • Removed a previous change to the autosave system from 1.81 that was causing crashes and corrupting save games in multiplayer.
  • Stray particle effects from battles were traveling across the galaxy before timing out.  This appeared to be a stuck turn.  This should no longer happen.
  • Adjusted AI evaluation of the "Open Borders" and "Non-Aggression Pact" treaties such that these treaties are free for alliance members.  
  • The "ignore defense" ability (from tech such as "Shield Punch") were not properly applying their damage. This has been fixed.  
  • Gave Pirate faction traits user-friendly names since they are showing up in some campaign diplomacy reports.
  • Ships with "One-Per-Player" components are no longer tradable.  This prevents an exploit that allowed players to get around the "One-Per-Player" restriction.  These ships are disabled on the trade screen and include a tooltip explaining that they cannot be traded.
  • The shipyard button "continue making this design until further notice" wasn't checking prereqs when deciding if it should be enabled for a build queue entry.
  • Notifications no longer interfere with game inputs on the left side of the screen.
  • Notifications are now refreshed only at the start of the game and start of a new turn.  This prevents creates gaps in the list in the mid-turn.
  • When adding a ship to the build queue, the list will automatically scroll to the bottom.
  • Clicking on shipyards in the Shipyard List now centers the camera on it and select it.
  • Fixed staked ship bar scaling issues for normal and medium UI
  • Renamed generic tech tree to "Generic Tech Tree".  It was mislabeled as "Terran Tech Tree".
  • Unowned asteroid fields now say "nearest owned planet" rather than "assigned planet" in their tooltip and selection context.
  • Fixed a crash caused by alerts that have no tooltip.
  • Added tooltip to Ship Level entry when viewing single ships on the Fleet Details Window.
  • Fixed a bug where the Invite Friends dialog would do nothing if the Steam Overlay was disabled. The button is now disabled with a tooltip explaining why.
  • Fixed bug where a player who dies in a mp game but stays around to watch the other players play would send an invalid match report.
  • Mercenaries:
    • Added warning if building a starbase upgrade will consume a constructor with mercenary components on it.
    • Building a starbase using the Mercenary ship "The Crux" now provides the correct influence bonus.
  • DLC
    • Rise of the Terrans: Updated United Terrans to use a "classic" ship style that better represents ships of that galactic era.  
    • Rise of the Terrans: Added United Terrans ship style.
    • Rise of the Terrans: Added over twenty "classic" ship parts.
    • Rise of the Terrans: Fixed assorted typos.
    • Rise of the Terrans: fixed bad Xendar homeworld name in diplomatic report screen.
    • Lost Treasures: Fixed a misleading bonus description with the Atomic Polarizer event.
    • Lost Treasures: Fix incorrect description on the Elemental Extractor Lost Treasure event.

11 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
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Mostly Positive (142 reviews)
Mostly Positive (5,247 reviews)
Recently Posted
673.9 hrs on record
Posted: August 24
Great game - far more than just a normal 4x, this environment enables the player to pursue methods of domination far beyond simply "Exterminate!" (Although you can still do that to, if that's your bent.)

A few teething issues still remain in the more enormous games, but the manufacturer is prompt in dealing with problems and rolls out updates with patches and new content regularly.

As a 20+ year player of strategy games, I would absolutely recommend this.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
62.8 hrs on record
Posted: August 23
game is addictive and fun to play. DLC's should be easier to use with better instructions
Helpful? Yes No Funny
The little Magikarp that could
36.6 hrs on record
Posted: August 23
Amazing game, simply put. Not my first 4X strategy, but it is definitely my favorite. It has a great deal of depth and awesome lore. Overall 9/10
Helpful? Yes No Funny
73.7 hrs on record
Posted: August 22
While the tech tree feels a lot shorter than in GC II, it's still got a lot of empire building to offer.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
55.9 hrs on record
Posted: August 22
i like it! you can create your own race! you can create your own ships! ANYTHING!
Helpful? Yes No Funny
46.8 hrs on record
Posted: August 21
Oh God there's so much to learn. Not for the faint of heart- but if you want some depth, you've got it!
Helpful? Yes No Funny
54.4 hrs on record
Posted: August 21
Great Game. Loads of micro managing options. An incredibly immersive strategy game.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
27.7 hrs on record
Posted: August 20
Sometimes when i finish my TURN, 'turn' button changed 'wait' and no further action appear. fix it.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
65.4 hrs on record
Posted: August 20
I enjoy these types of games. No suprises, exactly what I thought it was.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
36.2 hrs on record
Posted: August 20
Awsome game, best Space RTS iv found
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Most Helpful Reviews  In the past 30 days
29 of 34 people (85%) found this review helpful
3 people found this review funny
Not Recommended
80.1 hrs on record
Posted: August 6
This game is so good... Too bad it's also pretty bad... :-(

- There are campaigns! Like, a real story mode in a space 4X. Awesome.
- There are numerous different unique races to play.
- Each race has its own very unique characteristics, and its own tech tree.
- The aliens are well animated, and engaging.
- The graphics are top notch.
- The immersion is real. You can roleplay this game, no problem.
- The galaxy creation has all the features you want. And you can make it tiny, or large enough to blow your brain.
- Discovery is fun! The best part of the game, really.
- World building is fun! The second best part of the game.
- Empire management is both challenging and fun!
- You can design your own ships!

- Many little things don't work right, and it adds up. For example, if you have multiple ships/fleets surveying anomalies or exploring the galaxy, they will all go for the exact same spot, so you have to micro-manage them, even though there is an "auto" mode
- Often when multiple fleets are on the same hex, you will think you have one selected, only it's the other, and you will waste turns fixing movement and action errors;
- Fleets will take an arbitrary and often nonsensical path to their destination, and there is no "go through this way" movement. You click and it goes, and you can only hope there is no enemy fleet in the way that it arbitrarily chooses;
- During events a screen will pop up and ask you to make decisions that will affect some aspects of your empire, without any way to check your stats before making the decision. So you are forced to decide blindly.
- Basically half the interactions are badly implemented and ask you to make decisions without providing any way for you to call up the information in order to make the decision in a way that actually makes sense.
- The AI cheats. Blatantly, even on the easiest modes. Get the most technology-favored race, and optimize all your worlds for tech. When you meet even the most tech-unfavored alien race, they will already be WAY AHEAD of you. And so on.
- Too many things are completely random. One game I had 5 level 20+ planets (really awesome worlds) while other civs had none, and sparse level 10-12 worlds. Other times it will be the other way around. One time the strategic resources were pretty much absent, but one medium-sized empire had all 7 antimatter deposits in its control area. So basically the game randomly decides who will win before you play the first turn. I would be OK with randomness if the AI played on a level field with the player, but it does not.

There are so many good points about this game, it makes me want to love it. Yet, there are so many bad points, that this burgeoning love is never allowed to grow. Stardock really *COULD* fix the numerous issues, some of which form a collection of minor annoyances which are only hurting the game due to their numbers. And then there is the AI. It is said that GalCiv2 had one of the best AIs around. I have no idea what they did here, but there is no AI, only cheats.

Bottom line, if you want to play a game where the outcome is decided almost before you start playing, then you should get this game. Otherwise, sadly, I recommend you pass, because you'll be disappointed. Of course, there is also the multiplayer, although I have not tried that.
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19 of 23 people (83%) found this review helpful
Not Recommended
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.
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13 of 14 people (93%) found this review helpful
Not Recommended
5.7 hrs on record
Posted: July 28
Starbases. Those gorram starbases! And that an opponent can plop one right above your planet early on and you have to declare war to remove it. What is the point of having a border!? I really wanted to enjoy it, the planet interface is nice and interesting, but there is just too many things going on that is distracts from the fact that rapid early expansion is really the only way to play. Expand quickly and take every planet you can and then pump out starbases as fast as you can and then build up your planets. That's boring and depends mostly on the luck of the map. There are no limiters or expectation of steady outward growth. Just not for me and I wouldn't recommend it to my friends.
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6 of 6 people (100%) found this review helpful
Not Recommended
316.7 hrs on record
Posted: August 13
I really like Gal Civ 3 when it WORKS! My suggestion to Stardock is to stop releasing DLC and fix the bugs, mainly memory leak issues. My PC is an Intel 3570K with 8 GB of ram and a ATI 390 with 8 GB of ram so this way above the recommended specfications that Stardock states.
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
44.9 hrs on record
Posted: August 10
This game has a pretty intense learning curve but it is well worth the time spent leaning. This game's customisation, strategy, and replayability are the best I've seen and even monor changes from match to match can cause major shirfts in effective tactics. I'd give it 9/10 and it only losses that one point for the affore mentioned learning curve.
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
Not Recommended
65.4 hrs on record
Posted: August 16
After a few months the game stoped working. Iv tryed next to everything to get it to play again. Not sure why this happened?
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
Not Recommended
83.9 hrs on record
Posted: August 17
Takes forever to load, multiplayer matches crash every ~6 turn or so. I'm pretty much disappointed because of such nuisances.
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
174.4 hrs on record
Posted: August 15
An intresting turn based space strategy game that is also a sandox title but............ ON AN EPIC SCALE. Many factions that are almost totally different from each other. Create your own species and design your own fleet then place your bid for glacatic dominace. TRY your luck agaisnt me....IM A KING
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2 of 3 people (67%) found this review helpful
109.6 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.
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2 of 3 people (67%) found this review helpful
58.2 hrs on record
Posted: July 26
Nice game, but advanced. Play it if you have time for learning it.
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