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2.1 What is Imperium Galactica?
Imperium Galactica is a real-time space based strategy game, with adventure/roleplay elements. It features a mixture of space fleet movement and exploration, planetary colonies and production, strategic combat, research and development, and competing alien computer controlled players. It is most similar in style to the first Master of Orion game, but with important differences. Imperium Galactica is primarily real time, not turn based (it is arguably not true real time, because battle sequences are played out one at a time and most commands can be given while the game is paused). The game introduces the player to different features slowly as a series of missions and promotions, rather than allowing the player to control everything immediately. One can only play as one race, and the storyline and galaxy is the same each time, limiting Imperium Galactica's replay value. Imperium Galactica is not directly related to the early 1980s "Imperium Galacticum" strategy game by SSI, although they share a similar premise and design.
2.2 Who wrote and published Imperium Galactica?
The game was developed by Digital Reality ( http://www.digitalreality.hu/ ), and published by GT Interactive Software. Programming was by Istvan Kiss and Ferenc Szabo; graphics lead by Csaba Gyarmati, Karoly Rozsa and Tamas Fodor; music by Tamas Kreiner; and design by Gabor Feher. The game was released in March 1997. Imperium Galactica was the second in a collection of similar games by the same development team, starting with Reunion in 1994. It was followed by the sequel Imperium Galactica 2.
2.3 What are the requirements to run the game?
Minimum requirements are: 486DX4 100mhz or Pentium processor, 8MB RAM (16MB under Windows 95), 550K free conventional memory, SVGA video card with 1MB RAM, Soundblaster 2 or compatible sound card (must be truly 100% compatible), 4x speed CD-ROM drive, 65 MB hard drive free, mouse, MS-DOS 5.0. The game can be played under Window 95/98, although this may result in "reduced performance". Many people are able to get the game running under Windows ME (often running under DOS), 2000, and XP (often requires workarounds to get sound - see How can I get the game to work in Windows XP/2000/ME? below), however not everyone is successful. On faster machines, the patch may be required to stop the game crashing.
2.4 Where can I get the game?
Imperium Galactica was re-released as a budget title (in the United Kingdom at least) by Infogrames in 2002/03. Original copies can sometimes be found on eBay. It can now be downloaded from The Underdogs - http://www.hotud.org/component/content/article/37-strategy/24861 - although I presume that version does not include the videos.
2.5 What versions are there?
I know of five release versions - United States, European English (United Kingdom), French, German and Hungarian (thanks to Lord Grak).
2.6 Where can I get the latest patch?
The last patch was 1.3. The patch fixes "runtime error 200" and various gameplay glitches. Patches no longer appear to be available from Atari. A UK English patch (igupd12e_uk.exe) can be downloaded here - http://www.capsu.org/imperium/igupd12e_uk.exe. I do not have other language patches.
2.7 Where did everyone go?
In spite of the game's age, there is still a small online community discussing Imperium Galactica here, http://www.ataricommunity.com/forums/ .