The Galactic Code is a diplomatic agreement, tacitly agreed to by space-faring empires, that forbids the use of superweapons on other empires. The code provides the assurance of fairness for all interactions between empires, to the degree that an empire is not doing permanent damage to the Galaxy. It is based around fair play, and because of this an AI empire will not break the Galactic Code. It resembles the Geneva Convention or the International Space Treaty. Diplomat empires talk sometimes about the Galactic Code when you ask them to give you their superweapon.
Aggressive actions against another race break the Galactic Code when the other race is unable to defend itself, as it is seen as unfair to the peoples of the galaxy. This is similar to the real-life concept of "War Crimes". These weapons include:
- Gravitation Wave - Destroys all buildings on a planet, killing all sapient inhabitants, even if they are not in the space stage.
- Fanatical Frenzy - Instantly takes over a colonized planet and its inhabitants.
- Planet Buster - Destroys the entire planet permanently.
Rendering a planet uninhabitable does not break Galactic Code; however, if the planet was owned by another empire, it will heavily damage the relationship between the player and the target empire. This includes making a Grox Empire planet habitable for other races; all of their planets are T0, which is required for them to live due to their unique physiology. Raising the T-Score to T1 will kill all of the inhabitants. Static Cling, while temporarily disabling a planet's defenses, does not in and of itself cause the destruction of the race inhabiting the planet and hence does not break the Galactic Code, even if used offensively.
In Civilization Stage, you can gain the Gadget Bomb consequence ability by completing Tribal Stage aggressively. If you use it against a city, all relationships with other cities will drop by 90 for "Using nuclear weapons", similar to using weapons of mass destruction on a planet in Space Stage and getting a significant decrease in relationship for breaking the Galactic Code.
Changing archetype Edit
When you want to convert into the diplomat archetype, they will say that, due to the Galactic Code, you can't have more than one superweapon, so you will lose your old one. However, with Galactic Adventures expansion pack you can have more than one archetype special tool without breaking the Galactic Code.
Breaking the Galactic Code on a given planet will give a negative Relation bonus to any empires with a radius of 10.00 parsecs around the point of transgression. Breaking the Code can start multiple wars even if the war-declaring empire has lost nothing in what was done; being at war with the empire on which a WMD is used does not excuse its use; and even allies will not ignore the transgression. The maximum negative effect caps out at -200. The Grox, however, admire the breaking of the Galactic Code unless, of course, the transgression is against them. (Note: using Fanatical Frenzy on a Grox planet DOES NOT offend the Grox, which means you can convert all their planets by "save and load", which resets the cooldown). Any use of a WMD on a nearby planet will boost their Relation Bonus with you, up to a maximum of +50.