Star Control 3

aka: Star Control III, Star Control: Kessari Quadrant, Star Control: The Kessari Quadrant
DOS Specs [ all ]
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$5.00 used, $39.99 new at Amazon
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(prices updated 9/27 8:46 AM )

Description official descriptions

Since the events in Star Control 2 the Ur-Quan have been pacified and the captain who bravely destroyed the Sa-Matra has had a horrible vision of the future. Suddenly without warning, all Hyperspace travel in the universe has stopped. Top scientists have pinpointed the cause of this disturbance somewhere in unexplored space in an area known as the Kessari Quadrant. Hastily assembling a fleet of ships as and an untested Precusor star drive... a loose alliance of alien races known as The League of Sentient Races sends a task force to the Kessari Quadrant. You are its commander.

Star Control 3 features a new 3D star map, new alien races to discover, new worlds to explore and colonize, new artifacts to research and a new isometric Hyper Melee battle system for inter-starship battles.

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Credits (DOS version)

115 People (110 developers, 5 thanks) · View all



Average score: 68% (based on 23 ratings)


Average score: 2.6 out of 5 (based on 55 ratings with 14 reviews)

This is what happens when games are designed by committee

The Good
Ummmm... the CD-ROM makes a lovely coaster.

The Bad
The plot was horrible. It was an awkward slapping-together of old Star Control 2 plot lines (much of the dialogue taken out of Starcon2 verbatim) and poorly thought out new ones. Most of the time you were simply waiting to be fed instructions from the hint sytem. (It's a sure sign that a game is bad if it needs an integrated hint system).

The combat was poorly-balanced. Unlike the old Star Control 2 melee, which I still play on occasion, the ships tended to be horribly lopsided, hard to distinguish from each other and boring to fly.

The music is terrible, especially when compared with its predecessor (why they went back to MIDI music from MOD is beyond me). While some of the voice talent is quite good, this is neutralized by the fact that the dialogue is quite horrible.

The Bottom Line
"An eloquent argument for why Accolade should stick to sports games"

DOS · by Jonathan Daggar (4) · 1999

Cut SC3 some slack!

The Good
I played this game for the first time recently (2004) after not having played SC1 or 2 in nearly a decade. So unlike seemingly ever other reviewer that has torn this game apart, mostly by comparison to its predecessors, I really enjoyed it! It was similar enough to the original games to give me a little nostalgia rush, yet unique enough that it was playable for its own merits. The plot reminded me a lot of StarCraft, with its twists and constantly shifting alliances, and the dialog, while a little long winded and repetitive at times, was entertaining.

The Bad
Okay, so there were holes in the game, and not just a couple of them. Colony management was glitchy, melée battles were far too easy once you acquire some of the new ships, and there were a number of minor game bugs, like planet stats not appearing correctly on some unimportant planets. And some of the game over sequences were like something out of a bad Choose Your Own Adventure Book (like when you choose to ally with the Crux, and get dropped to a death screen that says "You join the Crux. And then you die." And yes, sometimes it was tedious to wait for fuel reserves to build up. But overall, these things didn't outright ruin the game's playability, in my mind at least.

The Bottom Line
Cut the game some slack. Don't expect a masterpiece, and don't compare it to either of the original Star Control games. It's not even an Accolade game, and you can always expect some inconsistencies when a new company releases a sequel to a classic series. Just keep your expectations realistic, and enjoy the game for what it is - a bit of good simple fun.


[This edit posted several months after my original review.]

Having just replayed Star Control 2 for the first time in nearly a decade, I just couldn't let my review for Star Control 3 stand without an important clarification.

StarCon 3 is almost EXACTLY like StarCon 2. Vance's review said it best. It appears that the Legend Entertainment Company LITERALLY took StarCon 2 and said to themselves, "Hey, this is a great game, and if it aint broke, don't fix it!", so they added digitized voices for each race, jazzed up the graphics and audio a touch, dumbed down the combat difficulty and AI, and re-released the all-new Star Control 2b for the next generation.

Let me emphasize this again - this game has the EXACT same plot, same storyline, suspiciously similar dialog, the same beginning, middle and end. The same goals, the same aims, the same alien races, the same ships. They renamed the Hierarchy to the Crux. Threw in a brief backstory with a one-line reference to StarCon 2 just so that people don't forget that this is supposed to be a sequel to it rather than a remake of it. But this game really is StarCon 2, revised.

Don't get me wrong, the game is still great. Of course it is, because StarCon 2 was great and this has better graphics and voiceovers! But play this as a sequel to the original Star Control, or heck, even as a standalone game. If you play the series in chronological order back to back, you are going to be left with a sour taste in your mouth when you feel like you've just played StarCon 2 through twice.

So, I correct myself - I said above, enjoy Star Control 3 on its own merits. Now I say, enjoy Star Control 3 on its own, period. Unless you prefer the nostalgia of an original game, in which case just play Star Control 2 and overlook this unimaginative remake altogether.

DOS · by Vaelor (374) · 2005

Terrible abuse of a good title by accolade

The Good
... .... .... hmmm...... neat box, you can store things in it!

The Bad
Everything really, I just hate it... I hate accolade 2... They should just let the ancient ones do this one, they are much better at it.

The Bottom Line
Dont waste your money on it. Star control fans should also keep your hands away from the big disapointment...

DOS · by necr0n0mic0n (2) · 1999

[ View all 14 player reviews ]


1001 Video Games

Star Control 3 appears in the book 1001 Video Games You Must Play Before You Die by General Editor Tony Mott.


A novel titled Star Control: Interbellum was published by Prima and written by author W. T. Quick. The book supposedly contains story and events that takes place between Star Control 2 and Star Control 3... however the popular opinion is that the author has never played or was ever given the plot to either game. Also the player character of both games is given a name for the novel, "Commander Omega".

Screenshot capturing technique

This game will dump a screenshot to a .PCX file if you hit PRTSC during gameplay.

Star Control III

Fred Ford and Paul Reiche III owned the character rights to the various alien races, Accolade owned the Star Control copyright. When the original creators declined to make the new sequel, Accolade gave them an ultimatum; sell the character rights or part three would be made with entirely new characters, no continuity involved whatsoever. The creators decided to make some final money off of their creations. A side note to this is that none of the original artists involved with Star Control II were even approached to work on Star Control III.

Information also contributed by Aaron Grier, Vance, and WildKard

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Contributors to this Entry

Game added by Trixter.

Windows added by Picard. Macintosh added by Terok Nor.

Additional contributors: RmM, Shoddyan, PoliticallyCorrupt, Plok, FatherJack.

Game added May 21st, 1999. Last modified August 27th, 2023.