Monday, September 09, 2013

Galaxy Union Gameplay Review

I'm playing Galaxy Union, a 4X turn-based space strategy game by cybercritics.

The game places you at a random location in the galaxy (which is not randomly generated); your goal is to earn shares (achievements) by expanding your economy. There is no tutorial (only help text), no main menu, and an interface that takes some time to learn. Resources are elements found in the periodic table, which can be mined and sold on the market. You can file a patent for a specific product made from your resources; you can then manufacture that product at factories on your colonies. The market uses supply and demand to determine prices, so producing things that are in high demand is a good strategy. Colonization does not require ships (just an expensive up-front cost), and placing buildings on your colonies will generate raw resources and materials needed for production (water, power, labor). Space stations placed on gas planets can conduct research and collect the gases necessary for most patents. Fleets can be constructed to defend your systems, although they are very expensive to maintain. While Galaxy Union has a couple of interesting, unique gameplay mechanics, the game lacks user-friendliness with a number of unexplained or poorly documented features and an inefficient interface.