Galactic Imperia Review: Adding Space To Space Battles
By Vincent Haoson (Vincenthaoson), OnRPG Journalist
Whenever we get to hear or play a space-themed online game that circles around the idea of us taking control of a ship or a fleet of ships, the first thing that comes to my mind is usually ‘do we get to blow things up?’ MMORPGs can easily provide us that release from the want of getting ships blown up, but the case is different when it comes to browser-based games.
That is why we are often bombarded by space-themed games which say they provide the ‘authentic space battle experience of a lifetime’ but what we get is a dull browser-game with units named after different kinds of spacecrafts, failing miserably in its promise of authentic space battles. Galactic Imperia, a browser-based game that belongs to this genre. Initially it seems to belong to that general cluster of browser games, however, the game has something more than meets the eye.
Too generic… but…
Galactic Imperia puts you in the seat of a commander that is provided with an inhabited planet that is chock-full of resources. Your goal is to be on top and to do that you have to use what you’ve got to earn a fleet, build up and ultimately destroy your competition to make sure you reach the top and stay on top. As you read my short description for the game I would not really be surprised to hear from you that the game seems to be all too familiar.
That’s basically what every space-themed online browser game has, from Galaxy Online to Astrowars this is the same recurring theme of you having your own planet and resources you would need to use to eventually be on top.
At the beginning of your gameplay this would be the most obvious first reaction, especially if you are looking for a browser game that offers something different. However, do not let the first impression of the game fool you. The game concept may be generic, but that is not the proper title that would best describe what Galactic Imperia is all about.
There’s always the but…
The one thing that really makes this game shine is that the game’s battle system is two staged. If you are looking for some juicy tactical spaceship fighting, Galactic Imperia can offer you that rush. The battles in Galactic Imperia require you to go through a planet’s fleet first before you can finally invade the hapless planet. That is if the planet has setup orbital defenses. This holds a sense of realism because putting a fleet battle before players can actually get to a player’s command center simulates that a planet who has achieved space and interplanetary flight must have at least set up a defense that would protect the planet from invaders.
I don’t think that I’d have to describe what happens when an invader pushes through the planet’s fleet. However things would not exactly be that easy because before you can loot the planet you need to shoot down its last defense. The idea that a planet has a last line of defense is straight out of a sci-fi flick and gives the game’s battle system charm and a sense of intrigue because you always have to figure out if the fleet of the player you are attacking is that strong or that you are falling into a trap.
Numbers is always good
Solo battles are not the only battles you can do in Galactic Imperia. There is also the alliance battle where you and your alliances duke it out with other alliances, testing your team strategy and of course your alliance’s strength.
This gives alliances in Galactic Imperia a bigger role in gameplay. Unlike in some browser based games like Travian, where guilds are only there for resource generation, strategy exchange and for show, Galactic Imperia on the other hand has an in-game alliance system that fully supports alliance versus alliance battle.
Its other redeeming characteristics
Aside from the wonderful battle system, Galactic Imperia’s other redeeming characteristic is that the game is heavily supported by images and illustrations. This makes the gameplay easier to understand.
The game also supports missions: if you get bored from developing your planet, you can go on missions that often reward you with the all too important credits. Next to that, the game has a very helpful in-game help system where everything from structures to units are explained and are in full detail. All you need to actually do is have a decent strategy and you are all set.
Given that the game already has a decent battle system and that it has some features that are usually lacking from other browser-based games, the game still falls prey to this genre’s reliance on real time for things to move. When it comes to developing structures, doing missions or even starting a war, your units would need to ‘prepare’ for the oncoming events and therefore require time before things are fully set up. Usually before you can start a mission or battle it takes about 40 minutes preparation time in real time for things to get started.
The other side of this game however is that it does provide at least a logical explanation that before any major ‘event’ your units would have to prepare themselves. Though it is quite true that this idea provides a good simulation feel for the game this is one of those things that is better of left as game-like.
All in all I must say that the people behind Galactic Imperia did their space battle research well. The game does provide at least a “simulated” scenario that gives the players the feel of how things work when it comes to planetary warfare.
However, even with a decent battle system the game still feels all too familiar, the overall concept is already done by a lot of other browser-based games who has better graphics and even a faster battle system.
The majority of the game’s problems are excusable if you are the type of person who does not really care much whether a game takes long to start something up. But if you are a person who does want their space-warship battles faster I would suggest try other games.
– The game is supported by images
– The game concept is easy to understand so you can play immediately
– The game provides all the information you need making decisions easy to do.
– The game is too generic and feels like any other browser game
– The game does not provide any starting tutorials for newbies
– Battles and doing missions take a while before you can actually start on it.