Ogame – A Free Online Strategy Game of Space War

Ryan Dube 11-07-2009

Ogame - A Free Online Strategy Game of Space War OgameLast year, my brother-in-law introduced me to a free online strategy game called Ogame. Ogame is a massively multiplayer game by anyone’s standards. It consists of 43 “Universes,” with each universe holding many thousands of planets – each home to a particular player who wants to become the master of that particular universe. Ogame is completely free to join and play, and there’s a staff of avid gamers who moderate and maintain the entire game system. Not only do they manage technical issues such as server maintenance and software glitches, but they also serve as the judge and jury whenever player conflicts arise (and they arise fairly often).


Ogame – A Space War Like No Other

When I first started playing the free online strategy game known as Ogame, I figured I’d play for about a couple of weeks and call it good. I was on vacation from work and looking for something to pass the time with a few of my online friends. We each signed up for a free account in Universe 36, claimed our first planet, and started our slow climb up the ranks.

Ogame - A Free Online Strategy Game of Space War ogame1

The opening login screen itself really captured my interest unlike any other online game I’ve ever played. While the fact that I’ve always been a sci-fi fan might explain my fascination with the graphics, the animated front page filled with fascinating and subtly moving images of space sparked my imagination. It reminded me of a game I was once hooked on as a young kid in high school called Sentinel Worlds by Electronic Arts. That sense of adventure and excitement from those long ago late-nights of game playing came rushing back to me, and I knew that Ogame already had me hooked.

Navigating Through Ogame

While there’s a lot of detail, complex game play and a lot of strategy involved in this game, overall navigating through the various control screens is a piece of cake once you get used to it. From the main screen, you have an overview of all of the planets that you’ve colonized.

Ogame - A Free Online Strategy Game of Space War ogame2


Yes, there’s also an interplayer messaging system that can get pretty busy at times, especially when you’re trying to coordinate an attack of several battleship fleets between you and your buddies against another team (or “alliance”). Clicking on any one of your planets takes you to a “planetary control” menu, where you can build additional structures to further colonize your planet (and add functionality). You can access these building options by clicking on the “buildings” link on the left menu.

Ogame - A Free Online Strategy Game of Space War ogame3

Or you can assign fleet production tasks to a particular planet – like building a fleet of fighters, cargo ships, or whatever else you feel you need added to your existing “fleet.” You can access your ship building area by clicking “Shipyard” in the left menu.

Ogame - A Free Online Strategy Game of Space War ogame4


Just keep in mind that in many corners of this space world – the size of your fleet defines you. In Ogame, size matters. Of course, the clever players understand that all brawn and no brains just makes for an easy target, so ultimately you’ll turn to your “Research” area in order to build up your capabilities and your strength in battle.

Ogame - A Free Online Strategy Game of Space War ogame5

As you build up your various technologies (all “building” activities are time-based), you’ll achieve more powerful “hits” against your opponents in battle, when spying on their planets, or the various other activities where you’re trying to gain additional resources.

The Game Play and Action

The “coolness” factor of Ogame comes down to the action. You could literally spend weeks just building technologies, fleet ships and buildings – but what good is it if there’s no action? The action in this game comes from “raiding” other player’s planets for their resources. And the addictive part of the game comes from the need for revenge when someone “crashes” your planet, wipes out your fleet, and takes all of your resources. That happens only once or twice, and you’ll discover that you’ve taken a sworn oathe of revenge, and you are officially an Ogame addict.


Ogame - A Free Online Strategy Game of Space War ogame6

When you click on “Galaxy” in the left menu, you’ll see a screen like that above, where you’ll be spending most of your time, sifting through from one “system” to the next. What are you searching for? Ultimately you’re hunting for vulnerable planets – those with a code letter “i” or “I” signifying that the player has been idle for a long time. You send over your “probes” to check out whether there’s a fleet, defenses or resources on the planet – and when you see an undefended planet with lots of resources, you send in your fleet to sweep up the goods and add them to your stash. Sounds easy enough doesn’t it?  That is, until one of their buddies “ninja’s” you, landing a fleet twice as large as yours on the planet just before your fleet gets there, wiping out your attack. Or someone much higher than you sends over a “deathstar” to wipe out anything you’ve got on your planet.

If you’ve a savvy and clever player, you’ll quickly team up with a good alliance of gamers and after many, many months of building up your planets, your fleet, and waging war against other alliances and other worlds, you just might become the king of Ogame… at least in your particular Universe. Once you’re done there, you’ve got dozens of other Universes that are also available for conquering.

Have you ever played Ogame, or any similar free online strategy games? Share your experiences in the comments section below.


Related topics: MMO Games, Multiplayer Games, Online Games, Strategy Games.

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  1. David
    September 17, 2009 at 6:36 pm

    Funny how I came across this, and to my surprise to see who the author was. I believe it was me that got you involved with this game. I must agree with alot of the people who commented, this is a highly addictive game. I've been playing for over 2 years, started in uni 36 and played in every Uni since. Met a lot of good friends in the game and in many ways I think that's where the addiction starts. But anyway that might be good for another topic.
    Good overview Ryan, come back and play....haha

    • Ryan Dube
      September 17, 2009 at 6:57 pm

      That's right! I have David to blame for introducing me to the addiction of Ogame. I had to go to rehab to break free, and I still get the shakes occasionally whenever I think about those late nights of coffee-fueled attacks on players that I should not have ever messed with... lol.

  2. Mattias
    September 11, 2009 at 8:17 pm

    Yeah I played in uni 4 on org realm even though there was a swedish one... Decided to lay it off though when they did a reset of the whole fucking game, wasting all the hours me and alot of other players had invested in it... Didn't see the point in making a new account when they could remove all progress at their own whim... I do agree that the game is highly addictive though :)

  3. Star Alliances
    September 7, 2009 at 8:46 pm

    oGame is often called the predecessor to Beyond Protocol and Star Alliances. Beyond Protocol is all the strategy of oGame but everything moves and exists in a 3-d universe. Star Alliances is the tactical brother of Beyond Protocol and provides a trigger style combat version of the same customizable gameplay seen in oGame and Beyond Protocol

  4. franky
    August 7, 2009 at 6:57 pm

    Ogame rocks, especially the new updated interface on the new servers, such as Andronema.

    Anyone know how to bypass websense to play Ogame?

    • Ryan Dube
      August 10, 2009 at 7:12 pm

      Hey Franky - thanks for your comment. I agree, it is an awesome game. As to how to bypass websense, that's a whole article in itself!

  5. Margaret
    August 6, 2009 at 6:25 am

    I recently came across your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I don't know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I will keep visiting this blog very often.


  6. rchard2scout
    July 20, 2009 at 12:12 pm

    I played Ogame some time ago, but I didn't have much time for it. I now play Ikariam with some classmates, which is basically the same but in another time (ancient greece) and also has been made by Gameforge. I really recommend it to anyone who likes Ogame! (go to world Epsilon and join my alliance, LIGHT!)

  7. threads
    July 18, 2009 at 2:57 pm

    Yeah honestly I have been playing Planetarion on and off for years . This is the True space game that can be played. Yes, you can still play for free. Paying has some advantages but not much. Why even play another space game?

  8. Daneel Olivaw
    July 13, 2009 at 2:35 am

    Yeah! ogame player from 2005 :D

  9. Mordrul
    July 11, 2009 at 7:17 pm

    Yeah, I used to play on Universe 6 in the .org group (they have many domains, .org for Americans, .nl for Netherlanders, .de for Germans -- which is where the creators of Ogame are) back when it first opened up. I had no experience with the game, but by myself (with no active alliance) I managed to get myself up to #40 in the un, out of some 6000+ players. I even managed to build myself the largest defense in the entire uni, sufficient that even the top players would not attack me, because there would be no profit in doing so (making the attack would cost them more in losses than my fleet was worth). I had great fun.

    ...For most of the time. Unfortunately the mods that they hire for that game are crack smokers. They will ban anyone at anytime for any reason, including just having a bad day. I got tempbanned (locked out for a few days) twice when in both cases I had broken no rules, only the suspicion of maybe having done so. The admins refused to address my complaints, particularly the several days of paid officer access that I lost in each case, and after the second time I quit playing.

  10. Chris
    July 11, 2009 at 3:02 pm

    This is basically a copy of the game which has been around for years and years and years and years, hehe. Not sure if planetarion is free anymore though.

    Lots of fun.

  11. otac
    July 11, 2009 at 2:49 pm

    I used to play ogame some 5-6 years ago and was quite good at it. But it was so addictive and I ended up playing for almost 3 years 24/7. Can't remember why I quit but it wasn't easy :)

    Currently play Buzzer Beater, Hattrick and Basketsim :) all sports games that dont require much time and online presence.