Second Galaxy is a new space MMORPG that is on the receiving end of endless comparisons to EVE Online. This is the same as saying that the Need for Speed and Gran Turismo are identical games because they both feature cars and circuits.

There are ships and stars, that’s for sure, but Second Galaxy is a much more focused affair. Instead of the daunting free-form exploration and player-driven economy seen in EVE Online, Second Galaxy eases you in with a somewhat engaging narrative, allowing you to become familiar with the universe and its warring factions. While the first hours will take you by the hand as you’re drip-fed new content and options, later you will delve into some open-ended gameplay and the game will finally reveal its true potential – it’s a huge epic with many options and standard MMORPG progression mechanics, albeit one where you will sometimes feel like you are playing a management sim.

While you can play Second Galaxy on Steam, this is first and foremost a game designed for mobile devices. The UI, gameplay, and overall experience was created for players in search of a complex space sim to play on the go, something that is rare, at least to such an extent. The Steam version is a straight-up port of the mobile release, for better and for worse, using the same UI and click-based ship maneuvering where you don’t really control your ship, you simply issue commands.

Second Galaxy Review Thrusters

The EVE of a new galaxy

The long-winded tutorial in Second Galaxy won’t give you the best first impression. It gets tiring as you are ordered to click here and there, triggering jarring memories of auto-play mobile games designed to funnel you toward the dreaded monetization path. After all, Second Galaxy is a free-to-play game and as such needs the revenue of microtransactions or subs to keep the servers running.

You start the game by picking one faction, with the same four classes for each one: Soldier, Explorer, Scientist, and Engineer. Each class will grant you a few bonuses, shaping the way that you will face the adventure. My class choice was the Soldier and considering the utility and effectiveness of my wingman, I don’t regret it at all. Here are the perks tied to each class:

  • Soldier: This class enhances your firepower and precision, as well as weapon production rates and wingman attack.

  • Explorer: The best with a wave scanner, dispatch recruits will bring bonuses rewards, and there’s a propulsion enhancement.

  • Scientist: Better than the rest at ship production, processor and shield management, and using a radio wave scanner.

  • Engineer: This class excels at energy control and reactor units, attachment production and use of the gravitational wave scanner.

Second Galaxy Review Dr Harrison Indiana Jones

A few hours in, we are finally on our path to conquer the galaxy, one quest at a time. Second Galaxy is a complex game, but comparisons to EVE Online are debunked by the simple fact that there is a deep story-driven focus to it. You can choose to skip the dialogue, but you end up missing out on some interesting lore. The writing is competent enough, despite the occasional grammatical error. There is a vast cast to keep the universe alive, although some of the characters controversially blur the line between homage and rip-off, such as one Dr. Harrison [Ford], who looks inconspicuously like a retouched Indiana Jones.

The Second Galaxy gameplay loop is predictable, despite the somewhat open nature of the gameplay. You accept quests from everything and everyone – there are a few instances where you get to choose your actions via a dialogue option, such as killing someone or not –, earn resources and XP from it, and enhance your stats. There are so many menus to browse and stats to enhance that it won’t be surprising if you end up feeling lost.

Each XP level will reward you with attribute points to spend in Weapon, Electronics, Defense, and Ship Piloting. In turn, each one of these areas opens an additional series of tech trees at the Academy, upgradeable in several stages. You can also develop implants to improve your pilot’s abilities and combat mastery.

Second Galaxy Review Space Station

The Hitchhiker’s Guide to Space Heroics

Combat in Second Galaxy is both tied to restricted by its mobile design. You don’t have the freedom to seamlessly control your ship, with your actions being limited to general commands. You can click on an enemy ship or location to automatically move in that direction, but it’s recommended to resort to the available interactions list. Clicking on the correlated button is the most straightforward way to move, talk, fight or interact with what’s around you.

Each of your ships has several equipment and weapon slots. A handy lock-on button will make your ship focus on the designated target, while another button will make it orbit the mark, concentrating its fire without risking getting out of range. Each weapon has a specific range, so you must use your thrusters to quickly get up close to the enemies and shoot them down. There are other buttons for shields, energy recharge, and other buffs that are crucial in battle. You can’t just press every button as you wish though, as your ship comes with limited power – you don’t want to be caught helpless in the heat of the battle.

While the outcome of the battles isn’t entirely up to your prowess, combat remains engaging and balanced. Fighting other ships feels exciting, with cooldown times and your selection of assorted gear playing vital roles. Ship characteristics and improvements will get you the upper hand, so it’s not like battles are purely decided by sheer luck. While there is an auto-combat option, it is ludicrously useless because it tends to quickly consume your ship’s energy, leaving you floating around helpless, in the best sitting space duck fashion.

However, you won’t be alone in your space adventures. You’ll be joined by several recruits who show up at a steady pace, eager to please and to show their raw firepower in the face of insurmountable odds. Each recruit also earns XP and comes with a considerable range of options for you to explore. From training to additional buffs, they also unlock their own ships, building on their attributes and becoming an invaluable help in battle. Recruits are a space hero’s best friends; you can bet your hard-earned XP on it.

Second Galaxy Review Recruit Wingman

Second Galaxy has an impressive array of equipment for you to earn, develop, and install. There are several side-missions where you can get useful rewards, further developing your pilot, ship, and assorted skills. Completing the main story quests is the best way to progress, but eventually you will have to resort to other tasks in order to get the additional XP and gear.

The devs boast a ridiculous number of ships for you to unlock in Second Galaxy. They mention a total of 150 ships, quite an impressive offer considering that the first few of them already bring the firepower. You get new ships by developing them through blueprints, not forgetting about the required resources and research prerequisites. But to pilot these ships you need a license, with each ship class (Frigate, Destroyer, Cruiser, Battlecruiser, and Battleship) having several license tiers for you to complete. It’s a tangled web that will force you through various events, most of them demanding a long production time, before you achieve your desired goal. This is the aspect where Second Galaxy mostly resembles a clicker game, but thankfully these tasks are interspersed with combat, exploration, and other options.

Second Galaxy’s vast world has thousands of different solar systems, divided into high, low, and lawless security status. You are mostly safe from harm in high security systems, but you can engage other players in low or lawless areas, contributing to a criminal level that will turn you into a target for the space police and other players.

PvP plays a massive role in Second Galaxy, as soon as you have significantly developed your pilot and ship directory. The big rewards come at a price, however; losing a battle means losing your ship altogether, so you must consider every factor before you choose to engage other players. You can also join a Corp to complete additional quests with other players or enter massive galactic warfare in Alliance wars.

Second Galaxy Review PvP Battle

Gameplay: 7/10

Once you get past the drawn-out tutorial, Second Galaxy becomes a gripping challenge with more options than you can poke a space stick at. There is an open-world feel to it that isn’t entirely deserving of EVE Online comparisons, but its streamlined nature is better suited for anyone who prefers a story-driven space epic.

There is a lot of clicking involved, but this is far from being an idle clicker game; there is a palpable and rewarding sense of progression as you unlock new ships, recruits, and equipment, making the PvE facet of Second Galaxy fun and compelling. The lack of full ship control is odd at first, but you ultimately become accustomed to it. In a sense, the UI that was first and foremost designed for mobile comfort places this game’s battles as an interesting hybrid of action and strategy.

On the other hand, PvP is ruthless and this is where monetization may play a significant role. With options to speed up development and research time, it’s only natural to assume that paying players will unlock the best ships and gear faster than free players. It’s up to you to decide if you want to go down that route or take your (long) time enhancing your character.

Innovation: 6/10

Second Galaxy doesn’t bring any groundbreaking features; other space games such as Star Trek Online or BattleStar Galactica Online have done it before. However, it’s not common to see a painstakingly crafted mobile space MMO.

Second Galaxy Review PvE Battle

Learning Curve: 6/10

Despite its efforts to ease players into its universe, the tutorial is a chore to go through. It’s not as much a tutorial as it is an endless succession of clicking orders and static screens, something that eventually gets tiring. However, Second Galaxy has so many submenus that you’ll take quite some time to learn the ins and outs of the interface.

While in deep space, the UI feels a tad cluttered, but that is the price to pay for the noteworthy depth that the game offers. Luckily, there is a button to hide the interface, allowing us to appreciate the very decent graphics on display.

Graphics / Sound: 8/10

Second Galaxy looks pretty good if we stay within the boundaries of mobile devices. Of course, the PC version doesn’t hold a candle to the likes of Star Citizen, but you would be forgiven for occasionally mistaking the footage for EVE Online. The variety and size of the ships impresses, and the deep space nebula is easy on the eyes. On the downside, some textures are terribly low-res, mostly spotted in wreckage, asteroids or other incidental objects.

There are some serious clipping issues in Second Galaxy that will make you roll your eyes the first few times that you spot them. No ship or asteroid in the game is solid, clipping with other objects in their way. Thankfully, this isn’t a frequent situation, but it remains concerning nonetheless, especially when you see your ship supernaturally trespassing a colossal space station.

The lack of a proper character customization system is a shame, because the static pilot artwork selection doesn’t really cut it, making the dialogues feel stiff and less lively than they should be.

In space, everyone will hear a substantial dose of decent voice work, mostly from your ship’s A.I. There isn’t full voice acting, only a few spoken words here and there, but the battles are chaotic, with no shortage of weapon effects and a hard-hitting soundtrack.

Second Galaxy Review Battle

Value for Money: 7/10

If your goal is to live an enjoyable space adventure, Second Galaxy should provide you with enough thrills for the reasonable amount of zero dollars. However, you’ll eventually find that you must invest some money in order to stay competitive in PvP, in case you want to take on the big dogs.

Overall: 7/10

Second Galaxy is a surprisingly robust and sprawling galactic MMO, despite first impressions misleadingly pointing to some sort of elaborated clicker game. This is one of the best games of the genre that you can find on mobile, but the Steam version is also interesting to play despite being a straight-up port. Persevere and you will find yourself living an enjoyable journey across a vast universe, with a gameplay loop that will take you through dozens of cool ships and tactical space battles.


  • A pleasant narrative focus

  • 150 different ships to unlock

  • Endless abilities and tech trees to explore

  • An expansive universe with thousands of solar systems

  • Compelling tactical combat

  • Very good graphics on mobile devices


  • Lacks a proper character creation system

  • Limited ship control won’t please everyone

  • Ruthless PvP

  • Sometimes it takes several minutes to warp to an objective

  • PC version is a lazy mobile port