an innovative, epic space strategy boardgame about Darkness and Light
an innovative, epic space strategy boardgame about Darkness and Light
This project will only be funded if it reaches its goal by Thu, December 5 2019 2:55 PM UTC +00:00.
Galactic Era is an innovative space empire builder boardgame for 2-6 players. You control a fledgling space-faring civilization venturing out into the galaxy. You will explore and colonize distant planets, advance your technologies, trade with allies and battle your enemies.
You will also need to select an alignment for your faction (star people), either „light“ or „dark“ with the appropriate consequences.
Das Spiel wird komplett auf Deutsch spielbar sein! Komponenten mit Text werden entsprechend doppelt vorhanden sein!
You can play your star people either on the “light” (service-to-others) or the “dark” (service-to-self) side. The game is quite different depending on which side you play.
Players on the “light” side must play more peacefully. You will thus be more trustworthy to others. You can also easily ally with any advanced civilizations you discover.
As player on the “dark” side however, you have the freedom to be as aggressive as you want. You can also subjugate primitive civilizations you discover that "light" players must leave alone.
You can also switch your alignment during the game.
The amount of luck involved in this game is very low. Combat is deterministic with hidden information (no randomness).
You can trade technologies with other players. Both you and your trading partner teach each other a new ability.
Increase your technology in five different fields. There are many ways to do this, including research and as spoils of war. If you specialize you will be rewarded with epic powers, at the highest level. Gameplay is very different depending on which path you choose.
Form different types of hidden fleets with your ships. These offer different capabilities and have advantages over each other in a rock-paper-scissors fashion. You can even customize improved capabilities for them.
- Typical elements of a space empire builder: exploration, expansion and combat.
- Many paths to victory, from peaceful to warlike.
- Alignment determines how you can interact with other players: “Light” (STO) factions can ally with advanced civilizations encountered but may not interfere with primitive civilizations, are peaceful towards other STO players, are peaceful with STS players unless attacked first. “Darkness” (STS) factions can be as peaceful to aggressive as they wish, and are able to subjugate primitive civilizations.
- Develop your civilization in across five different technology fields: Military, Spirituality, Propulsion, Robotics and Genetics. Those who are committed a single area of specialty are rewarded with epic powers, at the highest level.
- Highly variable game setup that influences objectives.
- Choose from 15 unique factions, each with a unique power (some even with two). Read more details about them here.
- Cooperate with other players by trading technologies.
- Deterministic combat, with hidden information; no dice.
- Fog of war creates uncertainty by hiding fleets with their tactical options and advantages.
- Secret objectives give each player a surprise power, while encouraging different avenues of play.
- A detailed and rich background story, based on testimony from secret space program whistle-blowers, UFO/ET witness accounts and channeled material. Click here to read more.
- Game Mechanics: Grid Movement, Modular Board, Partnerships, Rock-Paper-Scissors, Secret Unit Deployment, Simultaneous Action Selection, Trading, Turn Order Claiming, Variable Player Powers, Variable Setup
For more information go to the official website: galacticera.net
You win by scoring the most “destiny points”. You mainly do this by having a large population. You also gain points by fulfilling objective cards and various goals depending upon setup. Technologies do not automatically give points.
The game is played in 8 rounds. Each round you do the following:
1. Move & Fight
You take turns moving your spaceships, exploring new worlds and fighting battles.
Everyone simultaneously picks some actions to expand their space civilization (which are then executed in turn order). This is how you get new technologies, more stars, population and ships.
You can then also trade technologies with other civilizations you are in peaceful contact with.
At the end of every round you score points. Every round belongs to one of three eras. Scoring is different in each of these eras, offering entirely different incentives and rewards.
At Peace/At War
You can only combat another player and take his or her stars if you are "at war" with them. At game start everybody is at peace with each other. To be at war you have to "declare war" first. Players on the "dark" (STS) side can do this easily. Players on the "light" (STO) side are much more restricted. They must always be at peace with other STO players. They can only declare war on STS players under very specific circumstances.
Once at war though STO players can do everything the STS players can against their opponent. They even have an advantage then because they can "liberate" the opponent's stars, meaning they keep all of its population (STS players only keep 1 population when they take a star).
When and Why to Switch Alignment?
You can switch your alignment during the Growth Phase. This costs you an action of which you only have few, so you don't want to do this often. The are several reasons you may want to switch:
- to attack another player
- to take certain neutral stars you would otherwise not get
- to be at peace with a "light" (STO) player
- to use your other special power
- to gain points at the end of the round
- Military determines how well your ships fight in battle and gives improved abilities to your fleets.
- Spirituality gives you the ability to view hidden things in the game, avoid battles and makes you resistant to aggression at higher levels.
- Propulsion determines how far your ships can travel and also allows you to avoid battles.
- Robotics increases the number of ships you can build and also your research capacity at higher levels.
- Genetics increases your population size (this is important for points) and gives you cheaper extra actions at higher levels.
Turn order is an important element of play. Depending upon what you want to do, you will prefer to move before or after another player. Players can influence their turn order position, but only by giving up researching.
The central sector holds mysterious ancient relics that give you a special boost or power if you uncover them.
You can also read this play-by-forum session on BGG to see how the game plays.
Marco Cervone from Board Game Revolution:
Ryan Schoon from Man vs. Meeple:
Interview in German:
Die Rollin' (showing early prototype version):
2-player playthrough with Channing and Marco (note: a 2-player game has a few different rules):
3-player playthrough by Meeplegamers (video starts about 30 minutes into the session):
"But Galactica Era surprised me in many ways. There are a lot of clever mechanisms in here, the game seems to last a reasonable length of time, and so far I haven't run into anything that is broken or exploitable. ... It’s a complex game that allows many strategic and tactical choices, with some interesting takes on the genre. I was able to pursue various technologies or strategies that I wanted to pursue; not without challenges, but indeed without pointless “gotchas.” It left me feeling like there was a lot more to explore, plenty of strategic options to try out, and a whole galaxy of gaming to discover."
"... There are a ton of new games hitting the market but the ones that are likely to be the most successful are the ones that offer the range and depth of play that Galactic Era can offer. It brings many basic strategic elements that veteran 4X players will enjoy but adds unique twists that will offer dozens of hours of play just to get to the true mastery point. At that point, each play of Galactic Era will be like an artistic masterpiece being painted in real time on a board."
“I had the fortune to play this very outstanding space exploration game. While the tiles look similar to Gaia Project, it is a completely different experience. I really enjoyed that there are multiple tactics to earn points: peaceful exploration, growth and warfare are pretty balanced and there is no dice luck involved. Playing the Avians and starting on a home star sector, which already gave +1 Spirituality I decided to start with an additional Robotics skill point instead. Nonetheless, I lost the game, but only very close. All in all this is a very recommendable masterpiece.”
Marius Spix (playtester, see post on BGG)
“... I found the game flow to be much faster than in Eclipse or Twilight Imperium, to the game’s credit, though it probably helps when you’re playing with the designer. It’s simple enough: explore with your ships, liberate or subjugate planets, then choose to perform two of a bunch of optional actions like building ships, researching etc. Rinse and repeat. The much lower downtime, smooth flow and morality system are all points in Galactic Era’s favour so I’ll be keeping an eye out for this one.”
“... My first impression is quite positive. The game appealed to me, although I usually shy away from longer games. I wanted to finish it, even though I was not winning anymore. ... Just the fact that so much stuck with me and how much I heard from the other players shows that the game works well as such. The rounds seem to go by quickly, almost all of what the other players are doing is relevant. There are so many paths to go down. ... This is important to know in an asymmetric game and it shows that the meticulous work that the author has invested has definitely paid off. We only scratched the surface and as already emphasized this is only the very first impression of the game. ... If you are looking for a space / 4X game with great potential then you should take a closer look at Galactic Era. This is an insider tip for me, which is definitely worth a look and deserves the chance to prove itself on the table.”
The extra star people are the Caninoids. The Caninoids are a star people that love to trade. They travel through the galaxy seeking the best trades and have a very keen sense for these. On the STO side they seek to make deals that are very beneficial to both sides. On the STS side they make deals their trading partners "cannot refuse".
Our artist, Diego Sanchez, will now start making the images for this 16th star people. I can maybe publish a sketch soon.
Tabletop Simulator is a computer program by which you can virtually play boardgames online. You will need your own copy of Tabletop Simulator to play Galactic Era using this.
Download the latest draft version of the rulebook here. Please note that this version does not have the final graphics and layout.
Please add your vote here on BGG if you want rulebooks or entire game versions in other languages.
There is a detailed backstory that explains all the things you see in the game. You can read that story here.
The first part of a series of fictional stories about the background has been released because of a social stretch goal reached. Click here to read "The Opal Bathtub".
A background booklet with artwork and more story details will be included in the box.
Seajay Games will be working with partners to fulfill this game worldwide. The above are estimated shipping costs. The final cost may vary.
You do not need to add your shipping costs to your pledge here! The final shipping costs will be charged in the pledge manager!
If and whenever BREXIT happens, we will also offer UK-friendly shipping.
Unless you live at one of the shipping-friendly destinations, you are responsible for any import duties, taxes, or brokerage fees. We cannot mark your reward as a gift or declare that it has a value of zero.
If you live in the Middle East, Africa, Russia, South or Central America you may experience especially high shipping fees and a high risk of losing your package. In the case of a lost package we will offer only one retry to send it and only if you can prove it got lost the first time. Please be aware of this before backing the project!
Lurker (1 €)
This reward level has no reward. You will be allowed to do a late pledge for limited time period after the campaign in the pledge manager though.
We will announce during the campaign for how long late pledges will be allowed.
Funder (89 €)
This reward level includes:
- Galactic Era boardgame
Key Funder (89 €)
This reward level includes:
- Galactic Era boardgame
- Your name printed in the rulebook of Galactic Era
For the Key Funder reward your name will appear in the rulebook in the Credits section. We will require your first and last name for this. If these together are longer than 20 characters, then please shorten it accordingly. You may also use an alias. We will not allow any offensive words or anything that violates trademark, copyright or other laws, though.
Galactic Funder (289 €)
This reward level includes:
- Galactic Era boardgame
- Your name and photo printed in the rulebook of Galactic Era (optional)
- Choose a name for a star
- Card sleeves
- 1 future expansion of Galactic Era for free (incl. shipping)
- Iron-on patch with "Galactic Confederation" logo
For the Galactic Funder reward your name and photo may appear in the rulebook in the Credits section. We would also require your first and last name in the same manner as for the Key Funder reward. Additionally, you may provide a photo of yourself to be published. We will not allow any lewd or offensive photos or anything that violates trademark, copyright or other laws.
You may choose to name a star one of the sector tiles. We will choose the sector tile and location on the tile. You may choose any name as long as it does not violate any trademark, copyright or other laws. The name must be fitting with the theme and may not be offensive. The name must also be short enough to fit in the space, no longer than 10 characters. We reserve the right to editorial control, which means shortening or modifying the name to fit the game's needs.
You will also get transparent card sleeves, enough for all the cards in the game.
You will also get any one future expansion of Galactic Era that gets published by us for free. It will be shipped free of charge separately whenever that is published (2021 or later). If after 2022 no expansion for Galactic Era has been published or you do not want the expansion, we will offer a refund of 100€.
You will also get an iron-on patch (7.5cm x 4cm) depicting this logo of the Galactic Confederation (one of the star people in the game):
To apply the patch you will need to use a hot iron. Please follow these instructions:
Playmat Add-On (45 €)
In cooperation with playmats.eu we are offering a rubber playmat with a star background (see image below) to order as add-on together with your reward.
The size is 91.5 x 91.5cm (36 x 36"), which is large enough to fit a board configuration for six players in Galactic Era (with about 10-25cm of space left around the edges).
Add 45€ (about 50$) to your pledge later in the pledge manager (preferably) or to your current pledge in Kickstarter. You will be charged no extra shipping costs!
The playmat has the following properties:
- is flat when unfolded
- 2 mm thick
- resistant to folding
- a non-slip surface
- material satin/rubber
For retailers I am offering the following conditions: Price per game of 48€ (95€ MSRP), only in multiples of 5 (number of games per case). Free shipping to the USA and EU (and UK in the case of Brexit). If you are a brick-and-mortar store that demos games, you also get one free demo copy (I will need to see a website).
Please do a 1€ pledge and contact me (email@example.com) that you are a retailer with the amount you want to order.
I am also offering special deals for distributors outside the EU. Please contact me (firstname.lastname@example.org) for details.
- December 5th, 2019: Kickstarter campaign ends
- April 2020: artwork and graphical design finished
- May-July 2020: manufacturing the game
- August-October 2020: shipping and delivery of the game
Risks and challenges
This is the second game of mine to be published and the first one I am publishing myself. I have a lot to learn about publishing a board game but I am being supported by people with a lot of experience in this industry. The game has been thoroughly playtested, though rule or balancing problems might still occur as always with such a complex, asymmetrical game. The artwork is mostly done already and we expect only a few more months to finish it entirely.
Unexpected delays can occur during the finishing of the artwork, manufacturing and shipping. I have planned a generous time schedule though, so we should have enough time to make the game of high quality we are striving for in any case.
I will keep everyone up to date with what is happening throughout the process. You are welcome to reach out to us with any queries, suggestions and feedback.
I am happy to refund pledges if we cannot deliver the game for some unforeseen reason.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- All gone!