A week ago I picked up Galcon from the App Store. I wasn’t expecting too much, but from the videos I’ve seen at Galcom.com it looked moderately entertaining. Little did I know that I was downloading the greatest iPhone game ever to call appstore its home.
In space, no one can hear you scream…
So what is it about Galcon that makes it so great? Well, if you just take a look at the surface, it might look like any other game, but if you start digging, you’ll notice that there is no bottom. Galcon is a strategy game in the space environment. Your goal is simple, crush every other player around, but the way to victory is why this game deserves your attention. When I just had bought the game (Galcon Lite wasnt out back then) my tactic was simple, I took my ships and sent it at my opponents planets. Now, some week later, I know that this is a flawed tactic, and I would never simply send away my ships. The game keeps your interest up by continually adding new challenges to overcome, theres 10 different skill levels on the bots, and each time you raise the difficulty you’ll have to raise your game. The game keeps your attention by having a couple of different game modes to choose from, Classic, Beast, Vacuum, 3-Way, Stealth and Net Game.
Classic is a one versus one bot game. Beast tests your survival skills by letting the bot start with every planet except 2 (that you control) and your goal is to try to beat him. It takes some playing before you understand how this is done, but the challenge Beast offers at high difficulty will keep you entertained for countless hours. Vacuum is a one player game, where your goal is to capture all the neutral planets before time is up. The higher the difficulty, the less time you have. 3-Way is a three player game. What makes it intresting is how AI can “pick sides” for short duration of time, always ready to aid you in your attacks against the strongest player, but will backstab you when an opportunity is presented.
Stealth is probably the funniest mode in my opinion. Here you play one bot, just like in classic, but the difference is that you cant see eachothers ships. Playing stealth with the most difficult bot is insane, while playing a somewhat easier bot is frustrating, but addictive. When your opponent could have sent his entire fleet towards you, and you dont know about it, you will find yourself getting suprised by his movements every now and then. And the greatest mode of them all; Net Game. Net games work well over both 3G and WiFi, when you tap Net Game in the menu, a list of servers will load up on the screen.
There’s always a lot of players out on the multiplayer part of the game, so finding opponents is really easy. The servers all run the Classic game mode, but with support for up to 4 players. I can spend several hours each day playing Galcon over the internet. Its addictive and challenging trying to create the best strategies for winning each round, and for each round you win the other players will keep an extra eye out for you during the next round, adding to the challenge. In the settings app, you can change your favourite colors (for Net Games), choose wether or not you want music, choose your multiplayer name and password and choose if you want Color Blind mode.
The graphics are charming, but nothing special.
The sound effects are cute, and they fit nice with the game, again theres nothing special about them, but they get the job done.
It’s simply an awesome game. Great in Singple-Player, with 10 different AI skill-levels, and it’s dangerously addictive in Net Games.
Lasting Appeal: 8,9/10
If Galcon sounds intresting to you now, it will always remain entertaining. Aslong as theres players in the Net Games I can’t see myself ever give up on Galcon.
After you have played Galcon Lite you’d be ready to pay much more than 4.99$ for the fullversion. Luckily for you, you wont have to.
What Galcon lacks in Graphics and Sound it makes up for in Gameplay. Its a charming game, perfect controls and infinite replay value. This is a must-have for every iPhone or’ Touch owner out there!