About the campaign
I've been building toward Crusade for over 20 years from a story point of view.
While Galactic Civilizations is a sandbox game -- you create your own stories -- I came from the world of Sid Meier's Civilization where civilizations had a history that helped provide a context for them. I didn't want to have generic, randomly generated civilizations. So when it came time to design Galactic Civilizations, I drew on a sci-fi universe I had been working on for many years known loosely as "Tales of the Terran Alliance".
The stories were titled:
- The Terran Alliance
- The Defender
- Revenge of the Defender
- Twilight of the Morning Star
- The Yor
- Corruption of the Shard
Now, in terms of the game and its campaign, the order has been swapped a little bit.
- Galactic Civilizations I and the OS/2 versions dealt with 1 and 2.
- Galactic Civilizations II (Dread Lords, Dark Avatar and Twilight of the Arnor) deal with stories 3 and 4.
- Galactic Civilizations III deals with Corruption of the Shard.
The link above will take you to a blog I wrote 11 years ago about Galactic Civilizations II.
Corruption of the Shard
The premise of the Tales of the Terran Alliance was that the humans really were trying hard to put their warlike ways in the past and become diplomats. In essence, United Earth was literally trying to model itself on the Federation from Star Trek (i.e. Star Trek, the TV show, exists in this universe and had a substantial influence in popular culture's idea of how human's should behave in the interstellar club).
Unfortunately, humans in real life aren't as ideal as the ones in Star Trek. And when the humans found their good will betrayed by the Drengin Empire at the end of Galactic Civilizations II, they were savagely angry.
The Drengin had suspected that the humans were more dangerous than the diplomatic facade they provided. But they really had no idea what they were dealing with.
At the end of Galactic Civilizations II (which came out 11 years ago) the main human fleet had escaped to a pocket universe where the Dread Lords had come from and Earth was imprisoned behind an impenetrable shield to keep everyone else out but also the humans in.
When GalCiv III was released we dealt with the humans coming out of the pocket universe with a bunch of ancient artifacts including an orb known as Curgen's Bane (or just "the bane"). With this artifact they were able to demolish the Drengin fleet surrounding earth and bring down the shield around Earth.
As it turns out, the humans on Earth weren't idle. They had built a massive fleet during the time the shield was up and revenge was on their minds. Now, add to that a Terran fleet armed with powerful weapons from the pocket universe and the galaxy was about to see a different side of humanity...a crusade.