Mixed or average reviews - based on 58 Critic Reviews

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 11 out of 58
  2. Negative: 7 out of 58
  1. Jan 21, 2016
    Starships condenses Sid Meier's knack for turn-based strategy into a short, two-to-five hour burst of board game-esque tactics that's as satisfying as it is approachable.
  2. Mar 19, 2015
    Sid Meier's Starships lacks the strategic depth of Civilization, but the added tactical layer, and shorter game times make it a fair substitute, especially if you're looking for bite-sized strategy.
  3. Mar 13, 2015
    It’s a game you can complete, and when you do, you’ll want to start playing again immediately, perhaps bumping up the difficulty level or increasing the map size. That’s exactly the same kind of replayability spark that Civilization had all those years ago.
  4. Mar 13, 2015
    Although the price tag is much more reasonable than your average console title, $14.99 may lead other gamers in a different direction. That said, players who opt for a fiscally healthier expenditure will be missing out on a solid Sid Meier experience, since Starships is a space odyssey that’s definitely worth your time.
  5. Mar 13, 2015
    For gamers not wanting to dedicate their entire beings to the Civ games, this might be a worthy substitute.
  6. Starships may lack the complexity and nuance of other strategy games, and it feels a bit rough around the edges in places, but its accessibility, terrific turn-based combat, and bite-sized duration combine to create a tempting alternative to a multi-evening marathon campaign.
  7. Mar 12, 2015
    Humble and solid. Each game is different and requires reading the everchanging environment and learning to take advantage of the aleatory features. The perfect strategy game to play in short sessions.
  8. Mar 11, 2015
    Sid Meier's Starships is a good and replayable turn based strategy experience that will certainly appeal to lovers of classic science fiction franchises and to those who appreciate the way the leader of Firaxis managed to make player choices relevant.
  9. Mar 11, 2015
    Sid Meier’s Starships does away with all of the research tree and diplomatic hard work that often comes with a 4X title, replacing them with some brilliant turn-based strategy combat and just enough world conquering to keep any evil genius happy. This is the sort of game the Romulan Empire would love.
  10. Pelit (Finland)
    May 13, 2015
    Sid Meier's Starships takes a stab at space empire building with a light, turn-based tactical combat. It ends up too light though, with a very straightforward and simple strategic layer, and a decent but repetitive combat. It would have done well to take a step in the direction of classic Starfleet Command games to deepen the combat system. It's worst problem is though lack of feeling and chrome: you are not building your own eponymous Starships that you care about with the sterile and clinical technology system of the game. [Apr 2015]
  11. CD-Action
    Apr 30, 2015
    It’s the same game on PC and iOS, which explains its simplicity and low difficulty level. It just wasn’t designed to steal months of your life, but works great in short, relaxing sessions. [05/2015, p.64]
  12. Mar 14, 2015
    Sid Meier's Starships is a good game with some limitations that prevent it from a great experience. If you're looking for a slow-paced strategy game, this is a good choice.
  13. Mar 11, 2015
    Technically disappointing, we expected more from this new Sid Meier title, but is fun, with a classic hex strategic gameplay.
  14. Games Master UK
    May 24, 2015
    More short-term play-friendly beast. [June 2015, p.78]
  15. Mar 16, 2015
    The first hours playing Starships is great fun, because it’s easy to get into and not that hard to learn the basics. After a couple of matches, though, it becomes obvious that the game is lacking complexity and depth, where it would be really needed: in tactical combat diplomacy and planet management. But even if Starships lacks long-term motivation, it’s a game you’ll be coming back to over and over again.
  16. Mar 31, 2015
    The enjoyment you'll get out of Sid Meier's Starships largely depends on your expectations. If you expect a game with the depth and engaging gameplay of Civilization you'll be disappointed, but treat it as an unusually deep and strategic tablet game and you will absolutely get your money's worth.
  17. Mar 16, 2015
    Sid Meier's Starships is a good strategy game with a strong combat system. But we miss more complexity in its gestion and diplomacy options.
  18. Mar 15, 2015
    Fast-paced and accessible are not words commonly used to describe turn-based strategy games, but Sid Meier’s latest is a fun, breezy strategic time killer.
  19. Mar 13, 2015
    Fun, quick and light strategy game, Starships is a great introduction to strategic gameplay or for those who don't have time for a longer experience. On its own, it feels shallow and lacks extensive replay value. Not suited to PC, I think Starships will do best on mobile.
  20. Mar 13, 2015
    Sid Meier's Starships is a good introduction to 4X games or a good way to entertain yourself during long trips. It doesn't have Civ's depth, but it still is a enjoyable game.
  21. Mar 13, 2015
    Starships is simple, slick, semi-strategic fun. It’s incredibly accessible and lacks the sometimes overbearing menus and micromanagement that can make strategy games dizzying and intimidating, making it a nice point of entry for those looking for a casual experience within the genre.
  22. Mar 13, 2015
    Sid Meier's Starships is a short and sweet companion game to Civilization: Beyond Earth that doesn't overstay its welcome.
  23. Mar 12, 2015
    A light and pleasant strategy game, with a slightly chaotic artificial intelligence and repetitive mission scenarios.
  24. Mar 12, 2015
    Sid Meier's Starships is a quick and quite entertaining turn-based strategy game. Perhaps it's the beginning of a new sub-genre that might be called 5X with a fifth 'x' corresponding to eXpress. It is often said that brevity is the soul of wit but any regular follower of the Civilization series will remain hungry for more. It just has to be seen for what it is: fast food or something to snack on between meals.
  25. Mar 11, 2015
    Even though the space ship combat is challenging and fun, I don't think it has a lot of long-term appeal. The supporting strategy elements in Starships are too shallow and there's no cohesive narrative holding things together.
  26. Mar 11, 2015
    If you normally struggle with the multiple complexities of a 4x strategy game, Starships is a great introduction to the genre.
  27. Mar 20, 2015
    The problem with Starships isn't its quick and light gameplay, which actually has some very nice design ideas. Its problem is a complete lack of balance and refinement: the AI is lacking, some mechanics are negligible and others are way overpowered. We expected more from a game with Sid Meier in the title.
  28. Mar 11, 2015
    Sid Meier's Starships is a light strategy games imagined for the tablet gamers audience. It's a good game, but not a memorable one.
  29. Mar 12, 2015
    The pace is a welcome relief from other Sid Meier games, and the ship customization is simple yet multifaceted. However, the game has severe tactical balance issues, and is lacking any multiplayer component.
  30. Mar 15, 2015
    Nothing more and nothing less than a porting from the iOS version. Buy it only if you have an immoderate love for Sid Meier.
  31. May 13, 2015
    Sid Meier's Starships provides a simplified, portable gameplay snippet of the series turn-based gameplay that ultimately makes it a difficult recommend for Civilization fans. While the game was clearly designed for a tablet, there is still some entertainment to be found in brief gameplay sessions.
  32. Mar 25, 2015
    Sid Meier's Starships lack of depth and features to really arouse the gamer's interest. Moreover the iOS origin of Firaxis's latest title really shows when you play on PC, and the result is unacceptable for any gamer that has played a real Civ game before. The game is still enjoyable thanks to a worth y gameplay, specially on a tablet, but the Sid Meier branding is more of a marketing trick than a real seal of quality.
  33. Mar 20, 2015
    It’s a nice distraction and even a good bit of fun depending on how much you enjoy space combat titles, but only if you go in knowing full well that this is a port a mobile game, absent of much the charm and detail we’ve come to expect from Sid Meier titles.
  34. Mar 20, 2015
    Every Sid Meyer production should speak to a very specific audience, but Starships is way to simplified to engage strategy veterans.
  35. Mar 19, 2015
    Although this is not a bad game, Starships feels like a simple version of Sins of a Solar Empire and Galactic Civilizations. It is fun to upgrade ships and fleet, but this is not an epic experience due to its small nature.
  36. Mar 15, 2015
    Starships is a small game. This in itself is not a problem as long as you do not expect a strategy monster the size of a Civilization.
  37. Mar 13, 2015
    Sid Meier’s Starships’ battles held my attention for a handful of games, after which point the tactical AI’s behavior became exploitable and the strategic layer became too muddled and unpredictable.
  38. Apr 8, 2015
    Overall, Sid Meier's Starships is simply too simple and bland to hold the interest of empire builders for long, and its best feature, the battles, is neutered by lackluster AI.
  39. LEVEL (Czech Republic)
    Apr 10, 2015
    Connection to the Sid Meier's Civilization is just fake, this game doesn’t even offer any strategic orgies. Lower your expectations and you can have some fun making war not love... That counts, right? [Issue#251]
  40. Mar 20, 2015
    Sid Meier's Starships lacks depth and good graphics, but it's a fun turn-based strategic game that can be played for hours.
  41. Mar 18, 2015
    Sid Meier's Starships is a pretty good challenging strategy game, with tactical depth, but suffers from a lack of artistic ambition and a flat atmosphere that leaves one indifferent.
  42. Mar 16, 2015
    If you like those days-long Civilization sessions going through thousands of years of human development, the brief sessions of Starships leave you feeling like there's something missing – like you're eating a salad when you really want a hamburger.
  43. Starships is, first and foremost, a mobile game. It’s way too simple and flat (in every sense of the word) for PC, but is OK for a tablet. [May 2015, p.72]
  44. Mar 16, 2015
    There are lots of things Starships does poorly, but at least as far as I’m concerned the lack of meaningful tech tree and shallow starship construction really don’t suffice in a game that, after all, has Starships in the title.
  45. Mar 16, 2015
    Starships isn’t terrible, but it isn’t the polished product you’d expect from a studio with Firaxis’ history. Comparing it to its full-scale PC competitors, like Endless Space and GalCiv is cruel, as it’s sub-par in every single regard: unbalanced, repetitive, badly explained, rather ugly, with a dreadful mobile phone UI, and buggy as hell. Even judged against Firaxis’ other mobile games, Civ: Rev and Ace Patrol, this is small and crude.
  46. May 3, 2015
    Hard to recommend over the far more accomplished "Beyond Earth." [Issue#160, p.94]
  47. 50
    Rather than offering up a bite-sized entry into the somewhat intimidating strategy genre, Sid Meier's Starships serves up a half-baked entry that fails to provide much in the way of strategy.
  48. Mar 23, 2015
    Sid Meier's Starships is a strategy game for those that really don’t have the time it takes to learn complex mechanic. Sadly it’s lacking a good AI and feels a bit unpolished at the same time.
  49. Mar 20, 2015
    Had it been released as a good sized piece of DLC for Beyond Earth, it might have felt completely different, but as it stands I cannot help but feel a bitter aftertaste in my mouth.
  50. Mar 17, 2015
    There is no question Sid Meier’s Starships should have been much better.
  51. Mar 14, 2015
    Less an endless voyage through the stars, and more a space-bus journey to the shops. If you're intimidated by Civilization this is an reasonable starting place for the 4X genre, but it's not for those seeking a deep or lengthy experience.
  52. Mar 13, 2015
    What do you associate with the name Sid Meier? Epic strategy. What do you get in Sid Meier’s Starships? A simple conquest game that can satisfy your appetite for 4X about as much as a cheeseburger.
  53. Apr 23, 2015
    My first thought as soon as I opened the game was “wow this feels cheap.” The feeling never went away, and just got even deeper.
  54. Apr 7, 2015
    Space warfare in Sid Meier's Starships is meaningless. Although the game could develop the theme of Civilization: Beyond Earth, the game is trapped in a boredom and superficiality. Cutting the strategic part for the not-so-detailed action didn’t (and couldn’t) work at all.
  55. Apr 1, 2015
    Had the realization of that universe been more fully fleshed out—expansive and deep rather than restrictive and boardgame-like—Spaceships could have found success as a kind of post-human strategy game. Instead it feels lifeless. But not in the existential, gazing-into-the-void-of-space way. More in the way that an aging child realizes that her blanket is just a blanket, and promptly stops caring about it.
  56. Mar 30, 2015
    Its sci-fi galaxy is mostly abstracted, and its unit models are simple and blocky. It's not those issues that really put me off of Starships, but rather the way it seems to aspire to that narrow, dated idea of what makes a "good" mobile game. I can turn aside the quick and obvious assaults on PC sensibilities--the rough graphics, the lack of options--but it's the cynical design that guts me, in the end.
  57. Mar 19, 2015
    Ultimately Sid Meier's Starships feels like a game that might have been great in VGA back in the 90s.
  58. Jul 16, 2015
    This awful strategy game is not worthy of even a single playthrough neither on PC, nor on tablets.
User Score

Generally unfavorable reviews- based on 126 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 26 out of 126
  2. Negative: 69 out of 126
  1. Mar 12, 2015
    Pretty space graphics can't save this game from its boring, repetitive, uninspired gameplay. This Civ: BE offshoot might share its roots withPretty space graphics can't save this game from its boring, repetitive, uninspired gameplay. This Civ: BE offshoot might share its roots with other Sid Meier games, but it's clear that very little work and inspiration was put into this title. The fact that it's out on both PC and mobile should be indicative of that. Don't get this game expecting a full game experience. I've paid less than $15 and gotten far more for my money with other games than this one. $5 might be a fair price. Full Review »
  2. Mar 12, 2015
    It's simple, repetitive, and boring. A bit fun at first, but after one play session you've seen it all and won't feel a need to return toIt's simple, repetitive, and boring. A bit fun at first, but after one play session you've seen it all and won't feel a need to return to Starships.

    The tactical combat would be fun, but there is not enough on the strategy layer so you end up spending 90% of your time with tactical battles and it quickly gets tiring. You (and your enemies) can't ever actually lose ships, so you just end up fighting the same battles with and against the same fleets over and over and over and over again.
    Full Review »
  3. Mar 15, 2015
    This game is not 100% horrible but it being pitched as a PC game is laughable. The only options you have in the menu, volume control, no videoThis game is not 100% horrible but it being pitched as a PC game is laughable. The only options you have in the menu, volume control, no video settings, no sound settings, no actual fullscreen unless you hide the taskbar and then hit f11, f11 like you would with a internet browser. Strategy? What Strategy, you fly around with a single fleet of ships that you fly about and shoot at other ships. This is 100% a Tablet Game and should have been pitched as such on the PC instead of tacking Sid Meier's name to this game and pretending it was a full fledged game. This game is not worth $14.99 and should have been sold at mobile game prices. Full Review »