User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 100 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 83 out of 100
  2. Negative: 12 out of 100

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  1. Mar 7, 2012
    great game and i dont understand some of the reviews here, saying 10 for graphics and 3 for turn based, why are people that dont like turn based games playing turn based game an giving them bad rating becaue of that??? the reason its turn based is the reason why m and many others like these kind of games, it gives you time to think and plan and they are supposed to take forever to play, not just jump in to play one game or something like that. if you like turn based strategy games then try this one out, you wont regret it Expand
  2. Jun 4, 2011
    Fantastic game. Stardock truly outdid themselves. Years of hard work from this middle market company have truly paid off. Can't wait for Gal CIv III which I am sure will come out in a couple of years. :) I'd give it a 9.5 if I could but there are no fractions so I'll round down to a 9.
  3. Feb 13, 2011
    Turn based strategy means a game where winning is based on complex thought and not reflexes or the speed of the PC or connection. This is a complex strategy based game. As usual in strategy games, there is a very long campaign based on a story line and skirmish capability. The skirmish capability is outstanding, allowing the user to play the role of any of a number of races with different strengths and technological abilities. With some race customization capability and different star systems, this allows for a huge amount of variation in game play.

    Games can take many hours to play out. The game allows saving status and resuming. The biggest weakness for most people is the lack of multiplayer support. This game is only turn based with one person playing against one or more computer opponents. Alliances are allowed, either in up front game definition or on the fly, by negotiation between players. A multiplayer option would be nice, but is difficult to implement because the length of game play is often too long for keeping a group together.

    After downloading, there is no need for an internet connection to play the game and no disk is needed to play. This is particularly a plus for PCs without (soon to be obsolete) optical drives. I appreciate a game that cares about convenience for the user over awkward and annoying copy protection schemes.

    Reasonable graphics performance requires a midrange graphics card. Playability suffers a little with too slow a PC, though not nearly as much as reflex based games.

    The detailed, race based technology trees add complexity and affect strategy choices. Impressive ship customization options add to thought required and entertainment value. While a detailed analysis of the science may poke holes (population growth etc), the game is quite sophisticated and presents an interesting hypothetical future. Unlike many "strategy" games, the simple solution of massing a huge army and only then attacking does not work. Unlike many games, there is an ongoing maintenance cost for ships that are in operation. Maintaining a very large standing fleet hurts the economy and future military capability. To win requires a strong economy, manufacturing capability, technology and, of course, fleet. Much more realistic than most games. Also something that many political leaders do not pay enough attention to in the real world.
  4. Aug 28, 2012
    Maybe I just don't like 4x strategy games? I tried hard to get into this game, but it just all felt so pointless. There is a total lack of a compelling story in any of the game modes. Looking at the gameplay itself, everything felt like a tedious grind to me. Turn based strategy games can be a lot of fun (I've really enjoyed random stuff like Blood Bowl or the Romance of the Three Kingdoms series), but other than the enjoyable music, Galactic Civilizations II just didn't "grab" me at all. Expand
  5. Oct 28, 2011
    Loved this game. I would hate to hazard a guess how many hours I put into this horribly addictive game. Should come with warning saying " if you want to have any type of life do not play" highly highly addictive. You will be up to 5 oclock in the morning with this game. Must play for space sim strategy fans.
  6. Dec 28, 2012
    As much as I wanted to like this game, it was far too easy and the AI very insufficient and easy to manipulate. I could win every game easily with any victory condition I wanted. There were some good points. Being able to design your own ship was a big plus, and the tech trees were good too. The beginning was challenging, with trying to get your race profitable before your starting money ran out. But apart from that, not much else was good. Expand
  7. Jan 1, 2013
    Steam Winter Sale 2012/13: Outdated graphic. Tooltips or ingame help? Supports only one language (english). Crashes randomly. No link to or use of the community patches. Master of Orion 2 is still the master of this genre.
  8. Jul 10, 2013
    It was time to choose a new game. I carefully reed and analyse the metacritics. So I was sure to make a good purchase. I choose GC2. First, I had problems to install the game. I began my first game in EASY mode. Early in the game, some pirates take one of my planet between two turns. Took me many many turns to got the technology to take it back. It was just returning to normal when another gang of pirates arrived. Some professionals this time. Their vessels were arround 100 times stronger than mines. I took between 300 and 500 turns to got the technologies to built some presentable units to face them. By that time, they had destroyed almost everything I had and moreover, almost everything others had, in the galaxy. Some starships were hidden in the corners of the maps. lol. But I was finally ready, built 4 pairs of huge destroyers. I was wipe out in a single attack, and they had lost nothing. Just a bit damaged. They were still 20 times stronger than me. Soon after, they finished me. Pirates won the game -I had no fun at all. Even not interested to try another game. Those pirates stole me 19,99 dollars. Expand
  9. Jul 30, 2013
    My favorite 4x space game. Deep strategy that lets you choose how to develop your empire. Will you win by conquering, or by becoming the scientifically most advanced? Send in the troops, or build cultural starbases? There's a huge amount of customization, from making a custom race to a gigantic tech-tree. And being able to design and setup your own spaceships, that's what really propels it into greatness for me. On top of that, it still looks nice, and the interface is more than adequate. Bored by Endless Space? Try this! Expand
  10. Oct 28, 2013
    A true masterpiece of a game, will keep you coming back longer than any other game. I dare say it is superior to Master of Orion. There's a huge amount of customization, ranging from completely modifiable races, to a map editor and the most utilitarian starship editor in a game.The game fully supports mods, which increases the already immense replayability tenfold. Tons of humor, tons of random, interesting events...

    It's just such a joy to play, pick this up some time!
  11. Mar 24, 2014
    All Flash, no bang.
    Nice graphics overlay simple, not at all deep, game-play.
    It's a step removed from a point and click adventure.
    Desperate groupies try to hold this shallow title up to its better predecessors, and it's very irritating to play it and find out earlier games are miles ahead (in strategy and game play) of this game.
  12. Oct 29, 2012
    A brilliant turn based 4X strategy game that still has no competition. The balancing of the game is awe inspiring. I had to stop playing this game and uninstall it because it took over my every weekend and every afternoon and I was starting to lose contact with friends. I don't believe there will ever be a GalCiv3 because quite simply no-one can think of a way to make this game better other than updating its graphics which are still fine. Expand
  13. Jul 19, 2013
    One of the best turn based strategy games ever! I really cannot express how amazing this game is, it's only downfall is the cinematic combat, but even that is awesome! I would recommend this to everyone who loves strategy!
  14. Mar 25, 2014
    Instead of spending a lot of time to say WHY this game is GREAT, I'll just make a USEFUL review. Look that the NEGATIVE reviews (only EIGHT as of march/2014). They are of people that either: A) say that they don't like 4x B) say that the game is too long (do you REALLY expect to conquer a GALAXY in a couple of hours?) C) say that the game is bad because it only supports one language: English, although the review is in English.
    D) says that he likes the old games better
    E) reviews Galactic Civ II badly by saying that Stardust is not a complete game (may be he got the game in the bundle on steam, where both games came together). Man, THIS IS NOT THE GAME YOU ARE REVIEWING.
    F) give irrelevant runts and never justify his grade

    So, if not even the people that gave bad grades to the game could justify those grades, I can guarantee you that the game is worthy 10x the price asked today (US$ 10).

Universal acclaim - based on 19 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 19 out of 19
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 19
  3. Negative: 0 out of 19
  1. 100
    The technology trees alone make it impossible for someone who's sampled Twilight of the Arnor to ever go back to just playing Dark Avatar. Add to that impressive customization tools, new gameplay dynamics, better AI, graphic upgrades, new ship-builder components and completely re-done flavor text and hundreds and hundreds of smaller tweaks, fixes and changes and what you have is an absolute triumph and a new standard for turn-based-strategy games.
  2. 91
    There are no two ways about it: if you like space strategy games, you have to play Galactic Civilizations II. And if you play Gal Civ II, you have to play Twilight of the Arnor.
  3. 100
    It caps the mini-trilogy with a flourish and makes us very, very eager to see what the next proper release in the franchise will have to offer.