Horizon is a turn-based space strategy game of galactic exploration and conquest in which you are in control of humanity’s destiny. You will explore deep space, find new frontiers and discover alien artifacts hidden on long-abandoned planets.
User reviews: Mixed (321 reviews) - 59% of the 321 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date: Feb 6, 2014

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Buy Iceberg Interactive - Cool as Ice Bundle

Includes 5 items: Gas Guzzlers Extreme, Horizon, Nuclear Dawn, StarDrive, Starpoint Gemini 2


Recommended By Curators

"A great space game that shows alot of promise for those wanting to jump down the rabbit hole. Take control and venture and become the famous captain!"
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Recent updates View all (47)

August 11

Horizon release version - 141

August 17, 2015

* Added a Hotkey for the Planet Management List (Alt+F9)
* The cooldown for unloading troops to a planet will now carry over if the troop ship splits off to another task force
* The Turn Event Message for refitting planetary defense platforms will no longer repeat


August 8, 2015

Minor Improvements
* Ground troops already landed on a planet will now display in blinking text on the map before combat prompts
* Added extra tooltip info on the Galactic Council screen when it is the player's turn to vote - explaining all available choices
* Boarding ships will now give experience even when the boarded ship self-destructs
* Automatically retreating ships will now move away from the battle in the round prior to their exit from the battlefield

Minor Fixes
* AI ships will now try to retreat more consistently when severely outnumbered
* The Invade prompt will now be shown for non-combatants as well if they engage in battle

* Race Holograms and their framecount can now be modded similar to all other game assets

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July 12

Horizon release version - 138

July 12, 2015

This update makes ships and other vessels less fragile for a better combat experience in mid-to-late game. We hope you enjoy this and the other improvements noted below!

Balance changes:
* Armor Absorption rates have been increased across the board
* Bio-mechanical Armor repair rate increased
* Bio-Energy Armor will no longer be affected by armor-piercing effects
* Shields strength gains per level increased, recharge rate slightly reduced

* Vorpal weapons (Neutrino and Crystal cannons) chance for double hull damage has been decreased
* Colony Missile and Beam Defense weapons quantity will now increase due to weapon level miniaturization

Other changes:
* Non-combatant player ships will now automatically try to retreat in tactical combat so the player can focus on managing only combat ships
* The Legend map for races now indicates friendlies in green and hostiles in red, tooltips have also been added to indicate their current relations with the player
* Colony workforce distribution will no longer assign scientists if all research technologies are at maximum level
* Losing a game due to bankruptcy now shows a custom News Bulletin indicative of the event rather than the generic loss version

* A fix has been put in for a rare issue where ships could get stuck in a space flux unable to move for some time


July 28, 2015

Starbases, Planetary defense bases are once again manually controllable in instanced combat. They were being automated with the last update.

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“One to keep an eye on, definitely.”
70 – Strategy Informer

“Best of all, the way Horizon handles technological progress is one of the most elegant I've seen in a grand strategy game.”
65 – IGN

“With the excellent foundation that has already been developed and the dedication that L3O is showing to their fans, it promises to be a true 4X classic in its own right.”
90 – Aesthetic Magazine Toronto

About This Game

Horizon is a turn-based space strategy game of galactic exploration and conquest in which you are in control of humanity’s destiny.

You will explore deep space, find new frontiers and discover alien artifacts hidden on long-abandoned planets. You will also learn more about the galaxy as you come into contact with ten other species, each with their own unique culture, history and schemes.

A fully interactive galaxy allows you to navigate open space between stars and planets. Patrol your borders and, when the need arises, defend your territory by engaging in ship-to-ship tactical combat. Develop new colonies and then watch them become galactic centers for trade, industry and science - and of course military bases, outposts and shipyards to build your battle ships. Push your empire to its limits and go beyond the known horizon!

Key Features

  • Advanced turn-based tactical combat which many 4X fans have been requesting for years
  • Full Tactical ship control includes managing movement, weapons and more. Board other ships, attack from planetary and orbital defenses
  • A Distinct open world system, where ships can explore without artificial limits and where combat can span many turns before concluding
  • Interact with alien races of different levels, including ancient civilizations featuring their own unique storyline, schemes, ships and technology
  • An immersive galaxy storyline with open-ended missions that add another layer of gameplay over classic 4x mode which is also available
  • Engage in meaningful diplomacy choices that will impact the game outcome, includes coordinated actions with your allies against your enemies
  • Discover more than 80 technologies each with 10 levels of upgrades. Conduct planetary surveys and dig for artifacts
  • Design and customize your ships’ weapons and systems based on available technology
  • A detailed economy and colony management system with different types and levels of colonies based on your build choices
  • Play in different galaxy configurations from a few dozen stars to over a hundred star systems containing more than a thousand planets
  • Fully Customize your race or play as one of eight original races (NEW: Includes a mod that unlocks 3 additional ancient races now playable)
  • Extended Modding support with the ability to create your own races and even write your own scripted quests

System Requirements

    • OS:Windows XP SP3
    • Processor:Intel Core 2 Duo 1.8 GHz or AMD Athlon X2 64 2.0 GHz
    • Memory:2 GB RAM
    • Graphics:512 MB Video Card w/Pixel Shader 3.0 Support
    • DirectX®:9.0c
    • Hard Drive:5 GB HD space
    • Sound:DirectX 9.0c-compatible
    • OS:Windows 7
    • Processor:Intel Core i3/i5/i7 or AMD equivalent
    • Memory:4 GB RAM
    • Graphics:1 GB ATI 4800 series or better, 1 GB NVIDIA 9800 or better
    • DirectX®:9.0c
    • Hard Drive:5 GB HD space
    • Sound:DirectX 9.0c-compatible
Helpful customer reviews
30 of 35 people (86%) found this review helpful
39.3 hrs on record
Posted: May 5
Horizon is a space turn based strategy game. If you like this genre you will definetly enjoy the game.
The story behind this is the usual, conquer your galaxy while other alien races will try the same. Additionally, you will have a few missions so you can make other races happy, these missions provides relation boosts and possibly alliance with the race offered the mission or just make them to return their home galaxy and so on.

you can create blueprings, equip ships with weapon types you prefer, improve and terraform your planet, research new technologies.

The game isnt the best from this genre neither the worst, but it has a charm and enjoyable.
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17 of 19 people (89%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
26.5 hrs on record
Posted: May 3
This game is very fun. I bought this without expecting much (I'm a 4x addict) and this is now one of my favourite games. Highly immersive. A tech system that has a sense of adventure (you have to aquire alien techs from exploration and from scavenging parts of ships you destroy, plus trade).

I can't sing enough praises. I've just taken a quick break from an all day sesion and now I'm going back in.
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17 of 21 people (81%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
95.9 hrs on record
Posted: August 14
This game is the small cousin of "Endless Space" and "Galatic Civilization II" and big brother of "weird world: return to infinite space".

For the first game from this diligient Indie Studio it's not bad but it's still got tons of room for improvemnt.

They have released a lot update to fix many of the issue they had when first launch but there are just a lot things that cannot be fixxed from patch.

1. Vidoe/Graphics are quite well done. Some of the alien planet video is just simply wonderfully beautiful. And i can tell the animator of this game really enjoyed their work and made jokes in some of the videos.

2. Music is a little subpar. But for indie game it can still be tolerated. Please improve this if you can for next game.

3. Gaming interface is quite linear and it doesn't feel 3D at all. It's a universe so it should look like one.
If you turn off the grid the universe interface just look like a mess but if you leave the grid on it doens't look good at all.

4. Tech is weird for this game too which you don't really get a tech tree. You reach base on % of you send in 6 types and you can focus on 1 specific tech one it become available. IT's just too much of a random chance. You need a Major Breakthough for a tech to show up and you need another Breakthough to start finnal getting advantage of it.

5. Race balance is really bad. This game is a colonization sim so if you can live in poison/metal planet from start you gain huge expansion advantage. Since tech research is based on random breakthough. If you play a race that's not native to bad enviromental planet you will have to cross your finger and hoping terreform research pop for you.

There is a guide here on steam that shows you exactly how you break the game using these none-balanced ability and with that guide. The game become super easy but without it. if you play regular human on those high difficulty you will have a lot of trouble.

The Achievements in this game is actually really simple and straight forward. But it does take you to play many games to grind them.
2 of those main story mission that will give you a normal ending.

7.5/10 and i do recommend this game for 4X lover. I raised the score from 6.5 to 7.5 because it's indie studio's first game but please improve and make better games.
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9 of 11 people (82%) found this review helpful
44.2 hrs on record
Posted: May 1
We have been bless the last few years with a few very good 4X games, after a relative dry spell.
I am glad Horizon is one of the best, if not the best 4X game of the last few years.
The game is playable both as a traditional 4X game where you try to conquer the galaxy/etc and as a mix of that and light story intertwined with your conquering without taking away any freedom. The choice is yours.
You get to pick your race, a nice variety of them exists, including of course the humans.

Research, you have several fields/genres of research you can spread your research to, each of which has several "topics". You can choose to have either the field and/or the topic to have special focus/draw on your research points, Or not, leaving everything balanced out. Not all researchable itens are visible, for that you need a combination of luck, diplomacy and even finding a topic by accident during.....events. It's a very nice way of still getting surprise topics for research, even well into the game. It works really well.

There are sizes of ships you can use. From fighters up all the way to starbases. You can't design the outer looks of your ships, but you can do whatever you want for what they carry. Based on your research and limitations such as the size etc. For each size of ship you can save few schematics so that when you choose to produce them, you just pick what you want. Do you want a missile cruiser, check! Do you want a jack of all trades, check! Etc. Perhaps you want to add boarding troops to try and capture enemy ships, check! etc

The main galactic map is split in sectores (squares) similar to BOTF. Depending on the technology, engines, supplies, forward bases etc, you can move a number of sectors per turn. There is no limitation such as moving only through sectors which have systems in them. The map is zoomable with the mouse scroll wheel and focuses where your cursor is. When you click on a sector with a system , if there are any planets, a list of the planets in that system appear on the right side of the screen. There you can have a quick look of what the planets are (terran, barren, gas giant etc) and their size. Also if they have starbases or shipyards, at least if they are your own planets. Cause if they are the enemies' the intelligence might be innacurate... :)

You can survey planets and find "goody huts" in them, or nasty surprises orbiting them. You can terraform planets and of course colonize them. When you have a planet for yourself you can give orders to contruct builing types of specialization. Production, trade, research etc. You can build (or buy) as many as you want, limited by the size and type of planet and how many "slots" they have available. When you reach that limit you can't build anything more unless you demolish something else. That thankfully does not include military buildings. Military buildings which can be any of Starbase, Shipyard (allows constructing mothership type of ships, and better resupply and repairs of ships), missile defenses for the planet and barracks.

You can construct any number of ships you want, as long as you don't exceed the command points cap you currently have. Cap which can be increased for example by building starbases. When you exceed them you are going to pay a very large "fine" for each CP over the limit. If your economy can afford it, no problem, if not....

Battles. There are two types of battles, invasion of planets and space battles. Invasions take place in a static screen with a list of each side's army and equipment and a numbers only show of what is going on in the battle, ie, reduction of each side's army and equipment. At the end of the battle of course there is a result and one side wins.
That is of course if you want to invade a planet and not eradicate the population.
Space battles are in turn based format. There is initiative for each ship, based largely on the type of engine they have. Then you proceed and move, fire at an enemy with all or just a selection of your weapons, use boarding troops, launch fighters, etc for each ship. When you are done for a ship, if there is something more that can be done with it, but you don't want to do it, clcik Done and you given the control of the next ship if any. If there isn't any other friendly ship to "move" then it is the end of your turn and the enemy side/sides start playing. Yes sides, you might have battles with mor than two sides. Even if they are not allied to each other.
The battle are done really well and very fluid without any cumbersome gui, as the rest of the game is also very well designed for smooth playing.

Diplomacy, there are a ton of options you can choose, or the AI to choose. A variety of agreements from the simple non aggression pacts, to trade, research, supply, military agreements. And more.

Oh, and yes more than one race can have planet(s) on the same system. It can be very interesting. :)

All in all, a great strategy game, a great 4X game and a must play fo the fans of the genre. Just make sure to spend some hours first to get an idea of the scope of the game.

I have started a Let's Play of it, you are more than welcome to have a look. https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLtpqh8ebqvxd6FUfWDn5Kj2DHC65ngY2U

Great game.
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9 of 11 people (82%) found this review helpful
66.8 hrs on record
Posted: July 13
Horizon is an attempt to capture the Master of Orion (MOO) spirit and has a huge inspiration from it in many regards. Yet the game simplifies many aspects of its famous reference, sometimes for the better, sometimes sacrificing features which made its 21 and 18 years old elders become legend.

I can recommend this MOO-lite 4X game to people who are new to the genre as a very decent introduction, although seasoned 4X players (who have tried Imperium Galactica series, GalCiv series, Endless Space, Space Empires series to name a few) may find it pretty shallow and fielding little replayability at the end. Also its graphical style, general atmosphere and pretty easy to grasp gameplay are perfectly suitable for children (even overgrown ones) while still offering enough challenge at first.

Horizon suffers a lot from staying too close to the original MOO, even when MOO2 already had introduced simple yet enjoyable battle animations for ground combat. Nearly 20 years laters, the design choices are less limited by technology like they were at the time. While space combat has been drastically improved in mid and end game compared to the infinite fights of MOO2, the asynchronous turn-based game still suffers (like most 4X indeed) of a painful mid-game where AI turns may start to take round 5 minutes on bigger maps, and still requiring the player input at many stages of the process (which it stops until the player provides feedback). For this reason, I do not recommend playing on the largest galaxies like I did, enjoy several smaller and faster games instead, as the game mechanics also contribute to make the end game pretty painful (i.e. you can only capture/destroy 1 planet per system per turn - and actually destroying-recolonizing is slighty faster than invading several planets -, AI will spam colonizers and attack ships on any free/weak spot in you territory prolonging its own agony, and final diplomatic solutions like "make vassal or protectorate" are non-existent meaning should you go for the 4th X, then you really have to exterminate every last single planet - also note there is no "steam achievement" for succesfully ending the game like that, been there done that!).

On the other hand, many excellent features from the original "source" did not make it to this game, like - to name but one - infinite research (i.e. Miniaturization technologies) making it completely redundant at some point to have any research colonies. Talking about research, there as well the concept was very much simplified: nearly everything is available from start and you only get to pick the priority of one of the 6 fields and can put emphasis on one specifc technology in each of the fields as well.

Horizon brought some new things to the table though, with a quest system, which has you making some choices on how to deal with with each particular event and toward the greater goal of completion (although their is no "alignement" consequences for those choices, generally just economical ones). Also I was pleased with the survey mechanic, which makes you not only send scouts to systems and abracadabra it's uncovered but instead make you "explore" the planets one by one to discover potential bonuses (you can still colonize blindly if you like, something I like too). Introducing Command points also is a good call to limit the size of players armadas and force the player to make some ship and fleet design choices both in terms of tactical and strategical goals.

The digging feature is also an interesting idea, although it does not feel so much rewarding in its current state and could significantly be improved... which leads me to what follows.

One of the most positive things about Horizon though, it is the small team of developpers who cares about their product. 18 months after release (confirmed at the time of this review), they still patch it and add features. They read user feedback and even take time to respond to it, and that alone deserves the thumbs up.
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