Purge The Galaxy. Of Everything.
It’s good to be bad.
Certainly, that’s the case in Galactic Civilizations 2. With a few exceptions, the evil races are the most powerful in the entire game. They have access to some incredible bonuses not only in war-making fields like Weapons, Defenses, and Soldiering, but also in more general civilization-enhancing traits like Morale and Economics. The evil races also have some great character. The Korath have a broad range of unique buildings which reinforce their position as bringers of death and destruction, while the Yor have numerous unique abilities which convey their character as ruthless trader.
As a result of their power, the evil races are great for new players. Just don’t get lulled into over-estimating yourself, as the incredible bonuses some of these races receive are the equivalent of playing on one or two levels of difficulty lower.
The Dominion Of Korx
Ever wonder what the human race would be like if everyone followed the moral lessons of Ayn Rand novels? Well, the Korx are your answer. They have one thing in mind at all times - profit. They don’t care how they make money, so long as it is made. They are poor warriors, but they have few equals when it comes to running a business.
The Korx’s two most important bonuses are a +50 to trade and a +3 to trade routes. In other words, the Korx get more trade routes than anyone else, and they make more from them. This makes the Korx a love-them-or-hate-them race to play. I don’t like messing with trade routes, so I hate them - but if coordinating trade ships sounds like your bag, then the Korx will be your best friend. In return for these bonuses, the Korx receive a -20 to Loyalty. This means their planets flip more easily. The AI isn’t terribly good at winning cultural victories however, so this is not a major disadvantage. The Korx have no other notable advantages or disadvantages and get the standard 10 customization points. Their lack of advantages in economics or morale makes them far from the easiest race to play, but their lack of severe penalties makes them far from the hardest.
As you might expect, the Korx’s Super Ability is Super Trader. Super Trader further increases the Korx’s trading advantage by giving them all trade technologies at the beginning of the game. In addition, the Super Ability give the Korx an unspecified further advantage to trade income. This is a robust ability overall, and compliments the Korx well.
The Drengin Empire
The Drengin are bad guys. If they’re not at war with someone, than the Drengin aren’t happy. The only thing they like more than war is slavery, and in fact the Drengin’s industry is almost entirely dependent on slave labor. Where some might use robots, the Drengin use slaves. Where some might use a space heater, the Drengin use slaves. You get the idea.
The Drengin’s bonuses reflect their unfriendly nature. Weapons and Soldiering get +20 each. The weapon bonus is particularly savory, as a bonus that large in weapons isn’t cheap to purchase during racial customization. The Drengin also receive a +10 to Hitpoints, which is always appreciated and further increases the power of their warships. Besides bonuses to warfare, the Drengin also receive a +10 to Speed. This is a major bonus, as it increase the stock speed of the Drengin’s colony ships, meaning that the Drengin have an advantage during the always-critical colony rush. The only disadvantage given to the Drengin is a -25 to diplomacy. Diplomatic relations tend to be difficult with a race that is as likely to eat foreign ambassadors as eat with them.
Super Dominator is the Drengin Super Ability, and it is the only flaw in an otherwise deadly race. Super Dominator gives the Drengin free ships whenever someone declares war on them. This is a very good ability early on, but the ships aren’t upgraded as the general level of technology in the galaxy becomes more advanced. By mid-game, the Super Dominator ships earned by this Super Ability are simply cannon-fodder.
The Drengin may be evil, but the Korath - an off-shoot of the Drengin - are even worse. While the Drengin are happy to keep other races as their personal pets, the Korath only keep slaves so long as they are needed to build their newest weapon. Barring that necessity, the Korath would rather exterminate all life in the galaxy. This desire for galaxy-wide genocide shocked even the Drengin, and as a result the Korath left to found their own empire.
The Korath’s bonuses are intense, and well exceed those received by the Drengin. Weapons receive a +25, the highest weapons bonus given to any race in the game, while Hitpoints receive a +20, tying with the Arcean Empire for most durable warships. But unlike the Drengin, the Korath also receive bonuses that help them get around to building their powerful vessels, including a +25 to Morale and a +25 to Military Production. These are both extremely significant bonuses, particularly the +25 to morale. The morale bonus means that the Korath can tax their citizens heavily from the very start of the game, making the Korath economy easy to run. The Military Production bonus helps translate the economic power into industrial power, giving the Korath the means to build large fleets of warships. The Korath receive no penalties of any kind and they receive the full 10 points for customization.
As if that wasn’t enough, the Korath also receive an amazing Super Ability, called Super Annihilator. This ability lets the Korath research and build Spore ships. These biological weapons will completely kill the population of a undefended world (a world with no warships in orbit), turning it into a toxic planet owned by the Korath. The Korath also receive the first level of toxic atmosphere colonization for free. On the whole, Super Annihilator is arguably the best Super Ability in the entire game.
The Yor Collective
The Yor are a machine race that was originally build by the Iconians. The Iconians, knowing that the Yor could be dangerous, were wise enough not to give the Yor anything resembling sentience. But the Dread Lords, an ancient group of evil Precursors, gave the Yor sentience as a means of sewing chaos into the galaxy. The Iconians were nearly exterminated in the resulting slaughter.
The bonuses given to the Yor reflect their status as a non-organic machine race. They receive a +20 to both Social Production and Military Production, which gives them an overall advantage in production compared to all other races besides the Thalan Empire. The Yor also receive a +10 bonus to Economics, which is useful, but not so significant as to make a major impact. The same goes for their +10 bonus to miniaturization. More interesting are the +30 bonus to Soldiering and +100 bonus to Loyalty. The Loyalty bonus makes the Yor very nearly immune to having their planets culturally flipped. While none of the bonuses given to the Yor are shockingly good, the Yor receive no penalties, and have the full 10 points left over for customization.
The Yor’s Super Ability is Super Isolationist, which reflects the Yor’s preference to keep distant from the icky organic races which surround them. Super Isolationist makes it impossible for vessels from another empire to travel more than 3 moves per turn while they are in the Yor’s sphere of influence, no matter what the power of their engines. This makes it easy to fend off attacking enemies. As an added bonus, Super Isolationist gives the Yor the first level of Barren World Colonization for free.