Intricate is an understatement, but I’ll try to keep it concise. The basic concept of Galaxy Online 2 is to build ships and participate in battles. In the beginning you focus on instances to win “treasure chests” containing resources, and occasionally blueprints. These blueprints unlock either ship hulls or modules you can install on your ships, such as: weapons, shields, and defense modules. There are three different types of ships that interact in a sort of rock-paper-scissors manner, frigates, cruisers, and battleships. There are also four weapon types: Ballistic, Directional (lasers basically), Missiles, and Ship-based. These weapons all have different advantages and disadvantages based on damage, fuel usage, and reload times. Additionally, there are four damage types that different weapons can deal: Heat, Kinetic, Magnetic, and Explosive. On top of this the different ship hulls have four different types of armor that resist certain damage types and are vulnerable to others; nano, neutralizing, chrome, and Regen. So you can see there is a vast array of possible combinations that make ship designing very dynamic, and most players choose to specialize in certain weapon and ship types. Still with me? Like I said—Intricate.
Galaxy Online 2 is unique in that when your ships are shot down, by the pirates or another player, you actually lose your ships. You must put real thought, time, and effort into building your fleets. Some ship designs are great against instance pirates, and terrible against other players, and vice versa. GO2 also has an in house economy that revolves around the “Auction House”. This is a place where you can buy and sell: commanders, blueprints, and even ships players have built, for gold or mallpoints. Thus shrewd players can sell extra ships or blueprints to make mallpoints and buy things that are mallpoint exclusive without ever spending real money; a definite plus in my book. The in game economy is ever-changing based on market demand by the best writing services. For example high-level blueprints that used to go for high amounts are now selling for less than mid-level blueprints, because more players are “farming” the higher instances for resources and selling the unneeded blueprints.
Another aspect of the game is the use of commanders for your fleets. You get “common” commanders for free in the game; however, you can “draw” random named commanders using the games mallpoints. These named commanders are far superior to common commanders and come in four levels based on their power: spell (the lowest), Super, Legendary, and Divine (the most powerful). They also each have a unique story which explains and correlates to their various abilities. You draw commanders that have a 1 star rating, which gives moderate to low stat growth, not much better than commons. But, you can merge your commanders to increase their star rating (two 1 stars merge into a 2star, two 2 stars merge into a 3 star, and so forth) up to a max star rating of 9 stars. The higher your commanders star rating, the better their stat growth rates (from level 1 to 50). The four stats are Speed, Accuracy, Dodge, and Electron, which are fairly self-explanatory except for Electron which affects critical hit rates.
Finally, perhaps the most important part of long-term play is the cooperative nature of the game. Players have the option to join a “corps” (basically a guild), where you work with other players for attacking and defending. There are several advantages to being in a corps including: resource bonuses, construction time bonuses, game advice and discussion with allies, mutual defense protection, and many others.
Combat consists of fleets of nine “stacks” of ships firing at opponents’ fleets.
Typical to your “free” facebook games GO2 follows the “free to play, pay to win” mentality. You can play the game and even do well with your common commanders, but the named commanders become necessary after certain points in the game, and they can get really expensive to build. Many of the top players of this game have put hundreds, even thousands, of dollars into this game to build up commanders. However, due to the auction house and the cooperative nature of the game, many top players have been able to build great commanders without spending a dime. Overall the game runs fairly smooth, but being a Flash game it is subject to glitches and it occasionally freezes requiring you to refresh.
For a flash game with a relatively static battle system, the game has decent graphics. However, the developers have a penchant for pink and purple as ship colors, which gets old after a while. Additionally, most of the female named commanders are really risqué in their dress, which could be a positive or negative note depending on the player.
GO2 is not for the faint of heart, and requires a lot of time to play seriously. I would say that this game requires 2-3 hours minimum a day overall, though some days you can get by with 15-20 minutes. Most corps require activity, though being in a corps accelerates the game in many ways: resource bonuses, blueprint and commander trading, ship design advice, etc.
From left to right is the spell Rayllf, the super Gastaf, and the legendary Sandora. As you can see the commanders vary from normal, to scary, to downright skanky.
There is a lot to do in this game, and it takes a lot of time to do all of it. So once you start this game, if you are a completionist, or you want to build really great ships, you will be playing for a long time. And the game is set up in a way that it’s not just your daily time that matters, as upgrading takes a lot of time, and there are a lot of daily things that contribute to the lasting power of the game. Additionally, the developers are still adding new elements to the game, and the last few months have seen the additions of new instance types, new weapons, new modules, new ship hulls, and a lot of new commanders.
Should I play this game?
If you are a fan of facebook games and like something you can play while doing other things then yes, Galaxy Online 2 is for you. However, the game requires a lot of time and you generally need to be able to play about every day to succeed. You can choose to be more casual, but I feel you get less out of the game and would become bored after some time. If you have the time to commit to it and enjoy a strategy game rolled into an MMO, GO2 will give you endless hours of addictive fun. I thoroughly enjoy this game and love the cooperative nature of working with corps mates towards a common goal. There is also a lot of war in the server so it rarely gets boring. As far as new players are concerned GO2 runs many servers, and occasionally opens new ones, meaning that everyone is on the same playing field. So this game has much to offer, and does not punish late comers.
One of my favorite parts of Galaxy Online 2 is interaction with other players. You have specified chat channels such as: world chat in white that everyone can see and corps chat in green that only your corps mates can see.