Galcon Review

Galcon Review

Aug 18, 2010

Galcon was worth the wait.

Developer Phil Hassey created Galcon for the IPhone originally, and it was heralded as one of the most entertaining games on IOS, garnishing rave reviews. Phil delayed in releasing the game for Android, which afforded several developers time to release shoddy versions of Mr. Hassey’s masterpiece.

After some time in development, Phil has finally released Galcon to the eager masses who use Android phones, and has laid waste to the impostors. Galcon is not just a sloppy port of an IPhone game. The game runs flawlessly on higher-grade Android devices, and the gameplay, graphics, and sound don’t skip a beat.

If you’re not familiar with the game, Galcon is what Penny Arcade called ‘Space Risk In Real-Time.'” You can chose your color, and your goal is to attack (or is it liberate?) planets, while opposing colored teams try to do the same. Every time you select a planet you have already conquered, you have the option of splitting the ship/troop count on that planet in half, and sending those troops to overtake a another planet a different color has overtaken. If the troops you send to attack outnumber the defender’s numbers, you will overtake that planet, and it’s yours… until an opponent puts your booty in its sites. If you decide to do nothing, your troops will slowly multiply on the lonely planet you started with, while your enemies grow virally around you. Do you spread your troops out thinly and try to take as many planets as you can, or wait to build up your numbers?

Galcon is a great game for two reasons:

The graphics and very good, and the gameplay is interesting. With five different gameplay modes, I was able to switch up the types enough to stay interested for some time. Signing up for a Galcon membership (free) gives you access to the servers that host multiplayer games. Be prepared to have the floor wiped with your troops. The players online are very, very good. Although the action is chaotic and intense, the game doesn’t take itself too seriously. For example, some of the sound effects are clearly made by a human voice. It’s not lazy, it’s funny.

Galcon shows that the Android system is really starting to come of age. The processors on Android phones are finally able to graphically reproduce almost any Iphone game, and Galcon really shows that Android has what it takes to reproduce graphics and artificial intelligence with the best of them.

This game is a “must buy” for users of high-end Android phones. I say “high-end” because some users report their older phones are having trouble reproducing the graphics and artificial intelligence smoothly. The music is clever, but repetitive, and being able to play your own music in-app would be nice, without having to mute game music/exit app/play music/re-enter the app. The multiplayer works well, but if you get a text message or phonecall mid-game, you are immediately booted to the multiplayer lobby.

The game costs $2.99, which is a bit more than some are used to, but for this quality of a game, it’s a bargain.

Galcon Review Rundown

9
Presentation - Packaged well, this game is worth the money. My Evo 4G had no issues navigating menus, and the player tutorials are excellent.
9.5
Graphics - The graphics are engaging, the backgrounds are beautiful, and the ships flying around the planets are entertaining to watch. On large-screen phones like the EVO and DroidX, the game is gorgeous.
7.5
Sound - As stated above, the music is creative, but somewhat repetitive, and I muted it after only a few minutes of playing. Having an in-app audio player is needed with a future update.
10
Gameplay - Flawless!, This is a game that will not be deleted soon from your phone. It has great “pick up and play” appeal, but mastering this game of “real-time-risk” is hard, and will keep you coming back for more
9
Overall - An absolute “MUST BUY” if your phone as the power to push the stunning graphics Galcon has to offer.

App available on the Google Play Store »

Greg Svoboda
Greg is from Cleveland, but recently moved to Portland, OR. He is a freelance writer and blogger, also a hip-hop vinyl dj to rebuild street-cred lost via blogging. He is a husband, and soon-to-be-father. Follow him on twitter @gregsvo
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