Galactic Civilizations IV Galactic Civilizations IV Galactic Civilizations IV

"Hybrid" Game Strategy

Published on Thursday, July 21, 2022 By JeremyG In Galactic Civilizations IV

So I all this a hybrid strategy cause I feel it uses a few different play styles.   But has been very successful for me.   The rough idea is:

1. Expand quickly
2. Kiss everyone’s ass
3. Culture flip your home sector
4. Grow superior tech
5. ONLY THEN build a military with your superior tech
6. Conquer (if you even need to)

Race:  Custom

  • Traits:  Clever, Influential, Likeable
  • Starting Ships:  Colony Fleet + Survey Ship
  • Abilities:  Intuitive, Wealthy
  • Ships:   Influence  (but other's can work)
  • Homeworld:  Single planet with most tiles possible

Turn 1:

  • Culture:
    • Use your free culture point to get "Ambition" to make leaders cheaper
      • Buy the leader with highest intelligence and set them as Research Minister
      • If there are any leaders with "Free Culture Point" buy them (and put them to good use somewhere)
      • If there are any leaders with "Finish Current Research" make a note of them
        • Probably wont want to buy them in first few turns, but keep your eye out for a tech with long research time, and then use $ to buy the leader to complete it and give yourself a tech jump-start
  • Research: 
    • Starbases  (even if it's not on first screen)
  •  Homeworld:
    • Rush an approval building next to your capitol (or on an approval bonus if you have one)
    • Choose "Coerced Colonization" policy
    • Rush build a probe to help your colony ships find good worlds
  • Colonize:
    • Use control to buy 3rd colony ship
    • Send all 3 colony ships out
    • Do NOT colonize nearby "poor" worlds (there will be plenty of time for that)
  • Explore:
    • Send your survey ship to any visible ship graveyard.  More ships is better!   (If no graveyards visible survey anomalies until graveyards are revealed)
      • Hopefully you get an extra survey ship (set it to auto survey)
      • Maybe you get a constructor (claim best resources early)
      • Any other ship, will help in your exploration for good worlds

Turn 2: 

  • Homeworld:
    • Rush Build another approval building (approval should now be > 70%)
    • Queue some production tiles with max benefit (rush one of them on turn 3!  You have the money)
    • Rush build a colony ship, and queue another one
  • Colonize
    • Use your probe to help find good planets
    • Your goal is to SPREAD OUT and get the large (ie non "poor") worlds as far from your home world as possible, while still keeping your territory rather contiguous
    • Skip worlds with "-2 population cap" unless they are your only choice
    • Do not turn any of these worlds into core worlds!  (Use them to feed production to your home world until almost all it's tiles are built)
  • Explore
    • If there are other ship graveyards, repair survey ship until you can exploit them
    • If not survey anomalies and let survey ship repair on it's own


Early turns:

  • As soon as your constructors tech is done, find Durantium!!!
    • Promethium is next if you can find it
    • Priority of other three core resources are player's choice
  • Continue to exploit any ship graveyards ASAP
  • Hire a leader to be a commander of a survey ship, and start collecting.
  • Keep building manufacturing, unless your approval drops below 70-80.
  • Research anything that gives you culture point or policy as soon as it comes up.
  • Colonize the best worlds you can find
  • Don’t bother with Asteroid mining unless you have more asteroids accessible besides the ones in your home world
  • Rush more colony ships if you have found more large worlds to colonize, if not focus on getting the 5 core resources with constructors.

Next turns:

  • Continue to use culture for free colony ships, and begin to colonize poor worlds
  • Be nice!
    • Everyone you meet…give them Open Borders treaty for nothing in return!  (and make sure it doesn’t expire)
    • Setup trade routes with the most difficult neighbors
    • As soon as possible get the “Good Neighbor” culture skill (you’re gonna have a lot of neighbors)
  • Keep your eye open for good leaders to buy
  • Improve your influence with techs and game events.   Don't use tiles on influence.
  • Any time you get the opportunity to obtain Harmony Crystals, do it so you can keep your leaders happy
  • Once your home world is functioning well choose ONE world to assign a leader to.   
    • Try to pick one in a position such that both that world, AND your home world, will continue to get resources from other colonies.
    • Don’t make a 3rd core world until the second is decently operating.  (or if you really need to, to fend off opposing influence)
    • Rush-build the first couple manufacturing and approval add-ons like you did on home world  (you should still have money from your starting 3000)
  • When you can, build small defender ships, and put at least one on each planet you own so that you aren’t “ripe for conquest”

Long Play:

  • Continue to expand your culture
    • Build a few cultural star bases.
    • Don’t put them right next to other races, cause it will piss them off. 
    • Set them up to fill in the gaps of a contiguous territory.
    • This will allow your worlds natural culture to expand “faster”
  • Keep all your neighbors happy (even if you have to bribe), it will be too late when you culture flip their planets.
    • Turn down ANY trade request they make!!!  (unless it’s something you REALLY need and it’s a fair trade)
    • Turn down any “war for pay” offer
    • Turn down any request for money (unless they are a threat to you and relations are failing)
    • Add diplomats where needed
  • Keep your military small, except to deter aggression.
  • While your culture is expanding….research what you need to balance/expand, saving most military til last.   
    • I prefer to steal for military tech with diplomats
  • Keep an eye out for failing civ’s.
    • Trade with them for tech!
    • Build good relations with them!  (if it wont piss off anyone who’s a threat to you)
    • Hopefully when they are defeated they will give you their planets!
  • Don’t worry about going to other sectors until it’s convenient. 
    • If you don’t have a chance to colonize worlds in neighboring sectors before they are gone, you will setup culture starbases that are very powerful and culture flip them.
    • When you do this, just like in home-sector, don't put them right next to opponents.    I usually put them in the "unclaimed space" right on the other side of the sector entrance....and let it expand out from them.   This seems like it would take a long time,  but 2, 3, 4 starbases with max'ed influence works pretty fast.
  • After a while you will be on a path to culture-flip your entire home sector!
    • You will know this is gonna happen LONG before it does.
    • This is when you shift gears to building a military