Galactic Civilizations III DLC Guide

By Dan Thompson 11 Mar 2019 6

Galactic Civilizations III is one of the greatest 4X sci-fi strategy games to ever hit the market. There’s a great deal of replayability with new scenarios, strategies and an ever-updated steam workshop. However, this is even before considering the bounds of DLC which are available for the title.

GalCiv 3 is one of our favourite 4X Strategy Games, but there are plenty more.

It can be overwhelming to try and wrap your head around it all, but if you want to see exactly what expansion or DLC upgrade is best for you, here’s a handy guide.

Map Pack - Free



  • 8 new maps
  • A basic map editor
  • Free

Is it worth it?

The free Map Pack DLC for Galactic Civilizations III came out not too shortly after release. Not only does it include a handful of maps, but also the ability to (very basically) edit maps! Keep in mind, while this is seemingly a minimal amount of content, this DLC is at no extra cost so make sure you download it if you’re going to be delving into the never-ending space of Galactic Civilizations III.

Mega Events - $3.99



  • New optional events can be added to the experience. Including invasions and assassinations
  • The addition of events such as bank robberies, peacekeeping missions, and renaissances.

Is it worth it?

The Mega Events DLC released not to soon after, allowing the opportunity for more variables to pop up in a game of Galactic Civilizations III. This DLC adds a lot of random variables, in which assassinations which plunge the galaxy into war, invasions from the Dread Lord colony, and the existence of artefacts which boost races power every turn. The experience is significantly more difficult with these components enabled (the frequency of the events can be controlled), so be sure that you’re comfortable running games before adding this to your experience.

Revenge of the Snathi - $3.99



  • The squirrel-like Snathi faction has been added.
  • The inclusion of the scavenger ability.
  • New ship parts inspired by the Snathi faction.

Is it worth it?

The Snathi are a squirrel-like race that had been genetically created by the Dread Lords, however they also frontline one of the best DLC upgrades in Galactic Civilizations III as well. The DLC adds the race as a variable in every game and has a pretty entertaining (albeit brief) campaign, it also adds a variety of ships which are taken from the Snathi. The Snathi have unique abilities as well, in which they can scavenge any ship or monster and add it to their arsenal once defeated. While this could seemingly make the game incredibly unfair, the ability is also added to your repertoire as well, headlining the DLC with a new mechanic which can make play incredibly satisfying. This is definitely a DLC upgrade you’ll want in your cart.

Precursor Worlds - $3.99



  • The inclusion of anomalous events centered around exotic space technology.
  • The addition of new ancient planets and new colony events.

Is it worth it?

The Precursor Worlds DLC upgrade adds a variety of features which allow the utilization of exotic space technology. These exotic upgrades allow the gameplay to have more anomalies, as space elevators and promethean refineries now populate the area. If you’re already familiar with Galactic Civilizations III and are vying for more content, this is a decent purchase which will ensure a variety of new gameplay components.

Mercenaries Expansion Pack - $9.99



  • The introduction of the Galactic Bazaar, a sleazy marketplace which opens the door to receiving upgrades faster than usual, but at what cost?
  • The ability to hire mercenaries that will benefit your economy or war efforts.
  • Arcean faction is added, suited for player’s who concentrate on war.
  • The Torian faction, an aquatic based faction which are suited for those invested in the lore and campaign of Galactic Civilizations III.

Is it worth it?

The first major expansion for Galactic Civilizations III was true to its name. The Mercenaries expansion manages to bring in the first upgrade to the overall formula of the game. With the expansion, which introduces the Galactic Bazaar and a new campaign, you’ll be introduced to a gameplay mechanic which allows you to have guns for hire. However, not all utilizations are only benefits to war. You’re also able to use the mercenaries to boost a planet’s economy or livelihood, making the overall added experience much more rounded and entertaining.

The expansion also adds a variety of ships and factions. The Arcean faction is a warrior race which introduce new abilities and tech trees, while the Torians are an aquatic species which are enslaved by the campaign’s primary antagonist, the Drengin Empire. The additions in Mercenaries might seem minimal compared to Galactic Civilizations III other expansion but it’s definitely worth a look.

Builder's Kit - Free



  • Numerous parts to customize ships.
  • Free

Is it worth it?

The Builders Kit DLC is mandatory if you’re looking to be more creative with your experience in the game. There are hundreds of new parts and styles included which allow the player to customize their ships to any tune they want. However, keep in mind, the decals are mostly adjusted by whichever race you’re currently playing as, so you’ll have to still manually change those if you don’t like the current color scheme of a particular faction. This is a free expansion, so be sure to give it a download if you have even the slightest interest in the ship-builder.

Rise of the Terrans - $3.99



  • A prequel campaign that details humanity’s first conquest into space.
  • Includes the “United Earth” faction which elevate how much experience ships get from battles.
  • The new Xendar Menace race is introduced.

Is it worth it?

The Terran Alliance, the human faction of the Galactic Civilizations III universe was formed a long time before the events of the main campaign. The Rise of the Terrans DLC is a prequel campaign which explores the story of how we as humans first stepped out to the stars. The potential is there, but ultimately falls flat under its scope. It’s only $5, so it might be worth a look for the new race and new ships, but without much variety the DLC is lacking overall.

Lost Treasures - $3.99



  • New events centered around the colonization of planets.
  • Planetary improvements which will reflect the Ideology choices.
  • The addition of ancient weapons and ship parts which are utilized in unique ways based on your Ideology choices.

Is it worth it?

The Lost Treasure DLC upgrade adds a small number of upgrades to the base experience. While not as much content as an expansion, the added colony and planetary events are worth the consideration. What makes this particular DLC unique is the introduction of ancient treasures. You can only have one of these ancient treasures at a time, but you can have powerful weapons such as an Ancient Singularity Cannon which increase the scale of battles. If you’re looking for a challenge, this is a fun upgrade which will add more gameplay variety for seasoned players.

Altarian Prophecy - $3.99



  • Three missions which continue the Rise of Terrans storyline.
  • New Drath and Korx styles added to ship-customization.
  • New ship parts which are added from Galactic Civilizations II.

Is it worth it?

The Altarian Prophecy adds little, continuing the trend of the Rise of Terrans DLC. There’s the expected content upgrades, but nothing particularly noteworthy which changes the overall gameplay. With only three added missions, there’s only a slight reason to pick up this DLC over spending your money on one of the more comprehensive expansions. While the story might be intriguing for fans who are invested in the series’ lore, adding this to your library is best left to completionists.

Crusade Expansion Pack - $19.99



  • Espionage systems, which were sorely missed from Galactic Civilizations II were added.
  • The addition to invade planets.
  • New citizen system which allow you to control how your communities rise to power alongside you.

Is it worth it?

The Crusade expansion was the moment Stardock became serious when considering player feedback and it shows. Fans lamented the loss of espionage and political gameplay mechanics, and Crusade delivered. There was also the overhaul of the user interface and citizen system which make this one of the highlights of Stardock’s support. This is a must-have for your Galactic Civilizations III experience.

Mech Parts Kit - $2.99



  • Two new color schemes to utilize in the ship-builder.
  • Numerous ship parts that are mecha themed.

Is it worth it?

The Mech Parts Kit DLC is another building expansion which adds a great deal of new ship parts that have a theme centered around bipedal robots. There’s two more color schemes as well which allow overall customization to be enhanced. There isn’t much in this expansion that benefits those that aren’t deep into the game’s customization options. However, if you’re invested in the ship-building factors of Galactic Civilizations III or a fan of mechs, this DLC upgrade is mandatory.

Intrigue Expansion Pack - $19.99 (Review)

Gal Civ 3 Intrigue


  • There are new systems which enforce the reason to be invested in the game’s politics (manipulating them to your benefit).
  • The GNN news station which reflects galactic events.
  • The ability to create commonwealths which are automated governments.
  • The inclusion of the Galactic Market, in which you can reward yourself with early access to items which would otherwise be overly expensive.

Is it worth it?

This is the best expansion for Galactic Civilizations III, introducing a perfect balance of streamlining among the addition of variables which make gameplay more interesting for veterans of the title. If you can only choose a few of the above expansions and DLC upgrades, make sure this one is in your cart. I would also suggest reading our review to get an even larger dive into what makes it so great.

Retribution Expansion Pack - $19.99 (Review)

Gal Civ 3 Ret DLC


  • Adds two new races, the Drath and the Korath.
  • Revamps the game's technology tree.
  • Brings the game's internal; narrative to an end.
  • New features include new ships, structures and powerful artefacts and hypergates.

Is it worth it?

This expansion doesn't shake things up, but it adds a range of features that will be welcomed by existing players. The two new races are fan-favourites that make a welcome return, and the new tech tree is a breath of fresh-air which would help keep the desire for repeat playthroughs going. Everything else is mainly quality of life stuff to varying degrees - nice additions to have but nothing to write home about. GalCiv 3's internal narrative has always been there quietly ticking away in the background, and the story campaign included in this pack brings that entire arc (which started in the base game) to a convlusion. We've always thought this evolving story is one of the game's under-appreciated features, but hopefully anyone who has been going through these will be satisfied by the conclusion.

The Breakdown

Fourteen DLC's is a pretty sizeable library, and amounts to no small investment if you want to purchase them all. With that in mind, here is a breakdown of the five most important DLCs of the bunch, listed in the order in which you should consider purchasing:

  1. Crusade
  2. Mercenaries
  3. Intrigue
  4. Revenge of the Snathi
  5. Retribution

Rumour has it there won't be any more DLC for the game now - what has been your favourite purchase? What's been your best moment in the game? Let us know in the comments!



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