GalCiv III Adds Custom Factions & Mod Support

Tch, why conquer space for anyone else? Why march under the banner of the Krynn Syndicate when you could be The Confederacy of Ian? Who could stand up to the economic power of The Michael Empire? And imagine the terror enemies would feel lining up against the Aliciance fleet.

You can now make that happen in Galactic Civilizations III, as the latest update on its way through Early Access added custom factions, not to mention mod support.

It’s a fairly hefty update, also bringing bigger map sizes, rounding out the select of base factions, adding more faction abilities, and boshing in a new planetary invasion system. You could crudely fling soldiers at planets to conquer them, but there are fancy options like converting folks with propaganda or simply wiping them all out with biological weapons. Why is everyone in space so mean? That’s The Confederacy of Ian for you.

If you fancy reading more about modding, this is a fair introduction to how it all works. And this here explains about making custom factions.

GalCiv 3 is slated to expected to leave beta and properly launch some time in May. Until then, it’s on Steam Early Access. 4X games sound like an interesting one to play in Early Access, as the game may change a fair bit as new systems are added and tweaked. Though if you don’t want a self-modding game, yeah, you don’t have much longer to wait.


  1. rexx.sabotage says:

    That Ian, going on with his confederacies and video game rumors, that lad is one bad apple.

  2. frenz0rz says:

    I’d happily live in The Confederacy of Ian Football.

  3. ExitDose says:

    Customization of factions is something that I wish would be removed from 4X designs. It just seems to guarantee that the pool of abilities must be hobbled so that you can still maintain some level of competitive balance for multiplayer. I’d rather have the factions designed so that drastically different mechanics can be implemented for the different sides without concern of what would happen if they were mix and matched.

    Now that I think about it, I feel the same way about most customization in these games. It seems like these companies just throw a bunch of tools at the player and ask them to become the scenario designers.


    • arisian says:

      I’d argue that the fundamental problem here is trying to make the game “balanced for multiplayer”. This has a strong tendency to make all the factions bland and similar, because the more differentiated they are, the more impossible it becomes to balance things. Games like Master of Magic were great in large part because they didn’t even *try* to be balanced, and went for “fun” and “interesting” instead. I have no problem designing my own scenarios if you give me the tools to come up with interesting ones; e.g. maybe I want my race to have massive built-in advantages, but start off with a single colony when my enemies already have established empires. Or vice-versa. But because that scenario isn’t “balanced”, games that care about multiplayer generally don’t offer me the tools to play it out.

    • Elos says:

      More 4X games should try the Sword of the Stars way where the factions have unique drive systems and other real differences, not this “+3 to population growth” nonsense.

    • Mezmorki says:

      Yes – and the same issue exists with customization of units/spaceships/warrior-peeps/etc.

      When you open up the doors of unfettered customization it makes the whole design hinge on min-maxing everything. I used to think customization was critical to the 4X genre, but I’ve re-thought that completely having played a ton of Age of Wonders 3 with fixed units. When units are intentionally designed (i.e. by the developers) they can incorporate all sorts of unique effects, unit-to-unit synergies, and so that make the game far more interesting than just building the most efficient ship design every single time.

      Sadly most 4X gamers haven’t come to my, obviously correct, assumption ;)

      • Joshua Northey says:

        Over time I have made the same journey. At first customization seems awesome, but really it is just another way to leave the AI behind and have the game be even easier and less interesting.

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