iPhone Galcon App Icon
|Release date(s)||iPhone OS:
July 12, 2008
|Mode(s)||Single-player, online multiplayer|
Galcon is a series of real time strategy video games for Android, iPhone, webOS, Windows, Linux, Mac OS X and Flash, which were developed by Phil Hassey. It is set in space and involves maneuvering fleets of ships to capture enemy planets. A PlayStation minis version was developed and published in October 2011 by Beatshapers.
The original 1987 Galactic Conquest by Rick Raddatz was a shareware title for the PC. It was a multiplayer conquest game similar to the board game Risk and based on a game called Stellar Invasion by Bearbyte software.
Galcon Classic was released for the desktop in late 2006 for Ludum Dare, a timed game development contest. It was then developed into a more advanced video game. Galcon Classic features dozens of single-player game modes and full multiplayer.
In July 2008, Galcon was publicly released on InstantAction, a web browser game platform released by GarageGames. This is the first time Galcon was released with campaign sort of gameplay.
A couple months later, Galcon was released for the iPhone, frequently called iGalcon by fans. iGalcon was one of the first true multiplayer experiences for the iPhone but never gained enough publicity to kick off. iGalcon comes with multiple single-player modes featuring varying degrees of bot difficulty, and an advanced online multiplayer system where players can battle in rooms up to four.
In June 2009, Galcon Flash was released. Galcon Flash was a Flash port of Galcon and closely resembled the iPhone port. Although Galcon Flash was given a small introductory price, the amount of registered users was very small; however, there is a limited demo version.
Galcon Labs was released in early October 2009. Galcon Labs is a sequel to the first iGalcon. Galcon Labs features four new modes which are both singleplayer and multiplayer compatible. Galcon Labs has been received as a very positive addition to the Galcon series.
On February 11, 2010, Galcon Fusion was released for Mac and Windows as the latest addition to the Galcon family. It is the desktop and tablet equivalent to Galcon Labs and the original Galcon.
Players start with 1-3 large "home planets" and send off ships to conquer other planets around them. The numbers on each planet indicate how many ships it will take to conquer them. The numbers on a player's own planet indicate the amount of ships that their planet holds. Each planet a player owns produces ships for that player with more ships at a faster rate produced depending on the planet's size. Players can select what percentage of the ships to send from a planet and players can redirect ships in mid-flight. The aim of the game is to defeat the other player(s) by eliminating all of the enemy planets.
All versions of Galcon (with the exception of the Instant Action port) involve a unique ranking system. After ten days a player's score is erased, meaning a player must keep winning matches to increase his or her score and keep it high on the score boards, which can be found on Galcon.com.
Galcon Classic received good reviews and won multiple awards. Both iPhone Galcons received excellent reviews, but there was a smaller publicity angle. The InstantAction version was given few public reviews, but the overall rating is high. Galcon Flash also did not receive very many reviews, and mostly failed in the popularity.
Macworld gave the game 4 stars praising the game for being entertaining and online play but felt the single player levels did not progress evenly from easy to hard, in some cases. PocketGamer gave the game 8 out of 10 commenting it was an 'innovative space game with simple controls and deep strategy'. Slide to Play gave the game 3 (good) out of 4 saying that the extremely satisfying online play made it a good game.
In the fall of 2010 Galcon was used by the Google AI Challenge as a basis for the contest problem. For the contest participants wrote programs that competed in a simplified version of the game.