Star Control 3

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Star Control 3
Star Control 3 cover.gif
Cover art of the DOS version
Developer(s) Legend Entertainment
Publisher(s) Accolade
Distributor(s) Stardock
Designer(s) George MacDonald, Michael Lindner
Series Star Control series
Platform(s) DOS, Mac OS
Release date(s) 1996
Genre(s) Sci-fi real-time strategy
Mode(s) Single player, Multiplayer
Distribution CD-ROM, download

Star Control 3 is a video game developed by Legend Entertainment. They were hired by Accolade to create a sequel of Star Control II when the original creators Toys For Bob expressed no interest in creating the sequel with the same budget as Star Control II (which left them working without pay for several months). It was released for DOS and the Macintosh in 1996.


A view of a planetary system in the game after colonization and ship construction.

The game used a 2.5D form of melee combat, but 2D combat was still available. However, unlike SC2, all ship designs absent from the story mode were omitted (with the exception of the Arilou). The module tunes of the second game were replaced with MIDI music, and pixel animations for communication with aliens were replaced with rendered and digitized 2D graphics of live puppets.

The gameplay was a mix of borrowing the melee combat and alien encounter dialogue trees from SC2, with new colony management elements which could be compared to Master of Orion. SC2's resource gathering, and hyperspace travel gameplay elements were omitted.


SC3's story expanded on the mystery of the Precursors' disappearance, and introduced new enemies in the form of the Hegemonic Crux.

Shortly after the end of Star Control 2, hyperspace mysteriously collapses throughout the galaxy, stranding most space faring races. The Captain, living on Unzervalt, finds another precursor ship, with an experimental "warp bubble" drive that allows it to travel between star systems without using hyperspace. The Captain contacts the other races and they discover that the hyperspace collapse is somehow connected with the Rainbow Worlds, and that it originates near the galactic core in the Kessari quadrant. The Captain is sent to the Kessari quadrant with colony ships from several races to investigate and solve the problems with hyperspace.

The Captain explores the Kessari quadrant, clashing with the local power bloc, the Hegemonic Crux, led by the robotic Daktaklakpak. During his investigation of the hyperspace collapse, a new threat becomes apparent - an ancient race called the Eternal Ones that inefficiently consume the energy of all sentient beings once an eon are near to returning.

It is revealed that to protect themselves from the Eternal Ones the Precursors genetically modified themselves to regress to the intelligence of a cow. They created mindless robots (the Daktaklakpak) to reverse the process after the Eternal Ones left. During the last feeding, the Daktaklakpak malfunctioned and forgot their purpose, leaving them stranded at that intelligence level. The Captain temporarily reverses the process on a single Precursor, that instructs him before its death in how to make the Eternal Ones' feeding more efficient, so that only a little sentience is required rather than the destruction of all sentient life in the galaxy.

The Captain then solves various problems in the Kessari quadrant, including persuading the Owa race to stop dumping their antimatter waste on Rainbow Worlds, which was the cause of the hyperspace collapse, and breaking the power of the Hegemonic Crux, culminating in the defeat of a Crux Precursor battleship. The Captain then gathers sentience from many Kessari quadrant races and uses it to sate the Eternal Ones.


Hegemonic Crux[edit]



Critical reception[edit]

The game has received very positive review. On Metacritic Star Control has a score of 89% based on the reviews of 5 critics.[1] complimented the long play-time, soundtrack, speech, and "complex and intriguing" story.[2] Computer Games Magazine praised the "deep" plot, characters, and deemed it "one of the best games of the year".[3] PC Gamer said "Even with its few faults, Star Control 3 is a worthy successor and a blast to play" and Game Revolution wrote it "maintains the excitement and feeling that made its predecessors classic".[4] GameSpot described the game as "A vast oddity, integrating real-time strategy and action elements with the exploratory playability of an adventure title into one game."[5]


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