Stardock releases Galactic Civilizations 3 2.0 update

Stardock's space strategy game Galactic Civilizations 3 has undergone some big changes courtesy of the newly-released 2.0 update, including the addition of a new resource, Starbase Administrators, who are now required in order to construct starbases. Stardock said the admins, which will be available in restricted amounts, will make small empires viable by reducing the pressure to crank starbases out in large numbers. 

Diplomacy has also been reworked to improve the AI's ability to determine the quality of trade offers and react accordingly, while the Ship Builder interface has been changed to simplify navigation while simultaneously providing more information in the shipyard window, including currency, morale, and population. 

"Version 2.0 is the culmination of many months of working closely with our community on the kinds of features players like but often don't get a lot of attention," Stardock boss Brad Wardell said. "The diplomatic AI is more sophisticated and plays a lot like a human would both in terms of trading and how they deal with the complex web of foreign relations. We also added a new concept called administration that is designed to let players have smaller empires that are competitive."   

To mark the release of the Galactic Civilization 3 2.0 update, Stardock has both the base game and the Gold bundle on sale on Steam until January 30. A full list of the changes in the update is below.


  • Starbases now require one "Administrator" to build
  • Number of starting Administrators depends on galaxy size
  • Research certain Government Technologies to increase the number of Administrators
  • Current number of available Administrators can be seen on the resource bar or the starbase list tab


  • General pass on conversation weights such that the AI will talk more and offer more interesting trades
  • AI players who dislike you will charge you more in diplomacy
  • Changed diplomacy attitude label from "allied" to "loves (they're not allied)
  • Changed diplomacy attitude from label "war" to "hates" (they're not at war)
  • AI should be better at focusing on a given weapon or defense tech rather than trying to research multiple paths
  • AIs will heavily weight their relations with other players based on who is at war with whom and why
  • AIs will tend to come to the aid of their friends even if the enemy is more powerful
  • AI now has the capability of explaining in detail why they rejected (or accepted) a trade offer (though will require translation of new strings)
  • AI will use a redlining system of evaluating proposals such that each sub-AI routine will add marks to the proposal with potential veto power
  • AI now has the capability of explaining in detail why they rejected (or accepted) a trade offer
  • By default, the auto-generated military ships will have their categories folded for easier UI navigation


  • Home planet production points base increased from 1 to 10
  • Significantly reduced starbase spacing radius to 2 tiles, allowing you cluster them closer together
  • AI is substantially better at evaluating what ship to build, when and where
  • Early game improvements made less expensive
  • Late game improvement benefits reduced slightly
  • Research improvements have been rebalanced

UI Improvements / Bug Fixes

  • By default, the auto-generated military ships will have their categories folded for easier UI navigation
  • When a player designs a ship, it will, by default, be added to the favorites
  • Added the currency, morale, population, and turns information to the planet and shipyard window
  • Changed Terran and "space monster" fighters size from small to tiny, matching the sizes for other factions. This change prevents a crash in the ROT campaign
  • Map Editor: Fixed a problem that prevented the Mini-map Preview from working.
  • Replaced Diplomatic Specialization 3 to be "Efficient Administration" on all trees (Base Game and Campaigns)
  • Fixed bad Matter Disruption Cost multiplier that was making Matter Disruption 2.6 times more expensive than it should have been
  • Changed the width of the asteroid tooltip window and "nearest owned planet" value so that the value can no longer overlap
  • Negative Strategic resources are no longer shown in the trade options when they were negative
  • Updated map lighting settings to decreased ambient light and increased key light to make the ships look less flat
  • Mercenaries: Ships that you can't afford are greyed out
  • Fixed issue where Ancient Kinetic Augmenter had weapon FX even though it is a support module
  • Removed military ring Starbase range boost now that we have implemented Administrators
  • Fixed a problem that was causing rebellions in peaceful corners of the galaxy
Andy Chalk

Andy has been gaming on PCs from the very beginning, starting as a youngster with text adventures and primitive action games on a cassette-based TRS80. From there he graduated to the glory days of Sierra Online adventures and Microprose sims, ran a local BBS, learned how to build PCs, and developed a longstanding love of RPGs, immersive sims, and shooters. He began writing videogame news in 2007 for The Escapist and somehow managed to avoid getting fired until 2014, when he joined the storied ranks of PC Gamer. He covers all aspects of the industry, from new game announcements and patch notes to legal disputes, Twitch beefs, esports, and Henry Cavill. Lots of Henry Cavill.