In Nación Pix you’ll find the best anaylis of the most recent offer of Paradox Software to the Steam community, just a week ago. This is our review of Stellaris!
You are aboard your spaceship, it is the year 2200, and you are the admiral, emperor and leader, not only of your fleet but of your people; that’s it, one day you decided to play God and with the races you had at your choice, you made that numerous group of aliens than now are doing, undoing, fighting and relating with other races trusting in your wise judgment so you can take them into being one of the biggest empires of a far galaxy. You are playing Stellaris, Steam’s most expected grand strategy game and things are going to get really fun.
On May 9, Stellaris was launched, we played it, and yes, it is incredible. The game that promises to be one of the most modded RTS in history is also one of the most fun games for strategy fans and not so fans.
Since the start screen you know this game is going to be something special, the initial splash arts are so well done they give you chills on your back, you enter the solo mode and you see for the first time ever the creator of races, and there are lots and lots of options. Since the beginning Stellaris put extensive and plenty of options, the choices that you begin when creating your race will directly impact in the way you will be playing.
The physical characteristics are just a vanity act because you can choose from 94 different skins, and this will only determine how your race is going to look, after that you need to select the intrinsic characteristics of the alien you are making, even you can name the way your ships, leaders and worlds are going to be named.
Other RTS games determine the way you are going to play because the abilities of the races are predetermined by the IA, in Stellaris this is different since you choose not just the special things the alien will do but the way they are going to think and how they will rule themselves. So you may have a group of skinny nerds or a group of savages born to make war. The options are almost infinite.
When you start the game, you begin at your local planet and it is quite complicated to get on the game if you are not familiarized with the genre, but after that things become really light and simple.
You need to make you population to grow and to work, put some space mining stations and explore the galaxy so you encounter different species. Each empire you encounter will be hostile against you until you discover who are they, when you do it depending on the characteristics of each race they will like you or not, so now you may plan who will be your BFF in this galaxy conquest journey and who will throw everything at you when both of you encounter in outer space.
Stellaris allows you to create your own ships, leaving the weapons, shields and energy they will use in combat, it is quite a good detail in the game mechanics because you can take hours in making and remaking your ships thinking in a better way to defeat your enemy’s fleet that include cruisers and heavy battleships.
Another good thing in Stellaris is that does not center exclusively on the military aspects of the empire but you as a player can adapt new planets to your race, concentrate into developing new technologies, do business with other, insult your rivals or just get into exploring the whole galaxy. For achieving this you may choose different leaders to help you such as scientific, admirals, generals or governors with abilities that can turn the balance in favor of whatever your strategy is.
And if for some strange reason after all this you become bored, you can prove yourself against other players in its multiplayer system or try to make your own mods in the editor that includes this amazing game.
1. What is Stellaris?
It is a Grand Strategy game in which you can create and rule an interstellar empire with almost unlimited strategies.
2. What is Grand Strategy?
Grand Strategy is a sub genre of RTS which is focused in big sized universes (galaxies in this case) and with a huge amount of decisions that you must take; these go beyond the usual resource gathering and army formation.
3. So, it is like Age of Empires?
Yes and no. Yes, in the sense that you got to create a big fleet and conquest the galaxy. No, because AOE is focused in a microuniverse with limited options in comparison with Stellaris.
4. Where do I purchase Stellaris?
You can buy it at the Steam website.
5. Which OS does it support?
Mac OS, Windows and Linux; there is Stellaris for everyone.
6. If I do not play RTS will I like it?
Yes, even if this game is focused on the strategy lovers you will like it because it is a mix of the famous “Tycoon” games with a macrouniverse. So if you love Tycoons or just want to experiment with something uncommon, Stellaris is for you.
7. What is a mod and why Stellaris is the king of them?
Mods are little adjustments or changes to the game code so you can develop minigames, create new worlds or make new rules for the game. A famous game made from a mod of Warcraft 3 is DOTA that, after its success, created the base for the birth of MOBA’s.
Mods are usually not that accepted in the gaming world because developers do not want people to mess up with their longtime effort. Stellaris is a different game since it allows gamers to develop their creativeness and let them to do and undo with their own mod tool. Awesome.
8. Is it easy to catch up with?
At the beginning it is a little difficult to learn the mechanics but after some hours it goes on smoothly.
9. Any recommendation before playing Stellaris?
Brace yourself because you will not even notice how fast time will go. Between the music and the game’s rhythm, you will think that nothing is going outside your room but when you realize the amount of time you have invested, you’ll think that you are a time traveler.
10. How much does it cost?
The game has an overall price of $356 mexican pesos. It is not that expensive if you compare it with other games of the same genre.
11. Are the controls easy?
Yes, they are pretty intuitive but if you didn’t understand how the game works since the beginning it is possible that you may have a deception.
12 How good is the AI?
It is quite good, the AI it is mostly unpredictable when having space battles, that gives the game a quite good surprise element. Imagine that you are putting some mining stations and suddenly your radar alerts you that there is a 20 ship fleet coming to your homeworld, the problem is you don’t have a fleet to face the threat. It gets you on your nerves.
13. Which is my ideal civilization?
The one that adapts to your game style. The diversification of races is such that they adapt to the gamer not the other way around.
14. How do I win on Stellaris?
Conquering certain percentage of the galaxy or destroying a specific quantity of enemy empires.
15. Does the game become boring after some time?
If you do not explore, do and undo, yes. If you get used to something and you don’t dare to explore new things the game can become repetitive and boring.
16. Which civilization characteristic is the best?
It will depend on your strategy. For example, races that have longer lives will have older leaders with more experience or stronger aliens will do more damage in battle. Even there are civilizations with great breeding skills so their population will be huge.
17. How many races can I create?
As many as you want. You will have plenty of options so you can experiment and experiment for ages.
18. Can you speed up the game time?
Yes, but be aware that the choices you make since they will be faster, so… take it easy.
19. Is the game rhythm fast?
NO. It is a game that the solo games can last tons of time, depending on how many rces there are ingame and the size of the galaxy itself, so take a seat and eat because it will be a long journey.
20. How many planets can I have under my command?
It will depend on your empire characteristics but usually the limit will be 5, this does not mean that you can only colonize 5 planets but Stellaris developers knew that you may not have the attention to deal with more planets at the same time so it allows you to create AI controlled sectors that will administrate the extra planets.
21. Is there a power limit in my fleet?
No, there is not. But it will depend on the time and the growth of your technology. On a single day I got a 8K power fleet with 140 ships on it but apparently it can grow and grow depending on what you are researching.
22. Which is the best leader?
The one that goes along with your strategy because some leaders are more aggressive than others so the are more useful on war times, others are more focused on the empire development that will be more useful in peace times. As always you decide.
23 Is the tutorial good enough?
Yes. Sometimes it can turn very annoying because it gives you instructions for EVERYTHING, but you can be sure there will always be someone that help you out.
24. Can I choose the shape of the galaxies?
Of course, and you have to guess what it will impact on your game style because depending on the interstellar jump technology you chose at the beginning, you may not get to certain galaxy location quickly enough.
25. What details are attractive enough in the game?
There are many interesting things from earthquakes on unstable planets to comets that give you good luck. Incredible.
26. Which is the best strategy for winning?
It will depend on your race, but usually the same game mechanics guide you to war because you will encounter with many war loving empires that will battle you for the sake of it other ones will be so untrustful that the only way to negotiate with them is by the lasers.
27. How can I upgrade my ships?
With the investigations you will be making with your scientific team you can add new kinds of hull, weapons and even reflective shields.
28. How much time you have invested on a single game?
Until now I have played 14 hours (on one straight gaming session) and I am not even close to finish it.
29. If I get lost in the game can I replay the tutorial?
Yes, and the robot will always help you at any time, my personal advise is that you do not jump the beginner’s tutorial.
31. Do you think I can include races from other videogames?
No, but you can create races with the same characteristics, so the Covenant or the Zerg are not something that far. Beautiful, isn’t it?
32. How can I invade a planet?
It’s rather easy, you first need to have an assault trooper army, after that you need to destroy the planetary defenses with your fleet in a massive or controlled bombing (killing civilians if you decide so). You finally disembark your troops and invade the planet. But watch out, this will give you the planet’s control but it won’t be yours. This measure is used to “blackmail” the opponent and ending the war much faster. If you want to own the planet per se you need to declare it in the victory conditions before starting a war.
33. Is there a class of ship that is more powerful than another?
Yes, but when one of them has a great fire power it may lose it in movility. If you have a ship that can resist and has a lot of strength, any group of weak corbets are going to be an easy task for your vehicle.
34. Can you actually feel you’re in a battle?
The sensation is electrifying. When your 100 boat fleet is facing an 80 boat fleet and suddenly his ally arrives with 40 more ships, you know things are about to get intense.
35. Do ships look realistic?
Paradox’s designers worked hard enough to create epic space battle with futuristic ships and great war effect; you won’t be disappointed.
36. Is it easy to get lost between systems?
Yes, and this makes the understanding hard at first, although you get used to be more in your galactic map than in each individual planetary system.
37. Do leaders die?
Yes, and this can be a big problem, since lots of them don’t live enough to accumulate the necessary experience. If you send them in suicidal missions you can’t expect to progress a lot in the game either.
38. Are there humans in this game?
Yes, you even feel identified when you run into a planet with similar concepts, like the sun or epsilon.
39. Do you get to watch other non-civilized species?
Yes, and it is a very curious thing, since you now understand the aliens that visit the earth every day and you see stuff from their point of view. It isn’t suddenly a bad the idea of the governments hiding their existence, because there is a mission where your exploring ship crashes in a planet and you need to rescue your people before the “natives” know that they’re being watched. It’s pretty fun.
40. How is the online experience?
It’s not that big, since we’re talking about a niche independent game. There are not a lot of online players yet, but there will be in some time, surely when they have throughly explored the game in solo mode.
41. I don’t know how to program. Can I mod?
Of course! The tool included in Stellaris is so good that it seems they want you to get rid of their game with no limits or boundaries for your ideas.
42. How hard are the Steam achievements?
Some are pretty complicated, but they’re medium difficulty in general. There are not lot of them yet but it is expected that more challenges will be added with the passing of time.
43. Can i play it with my friends in a LAN?
It’s something very fun to do and of course, nothing stops you from doing it. Just order a lot of food and take turns to rest, because it’s going to take a while to play a complete match.
44. How good are the graphics?
They’re good but not incredible. They fulfill their function but it’s what you notice the least at the moment of playing because of the huge amount of decisions you need to take.
45. How big and impressive are the intergalactic battles?
They’re really good but you need to adjust the time speed to see them well because they’re very quick and although the details are lacking, it’s so exciting when a couple of 100 ships fleets battle between them. It’s incredible.
46. Does the visual aspect influence the game?
Not directly, it’s just a very well worked artistic element.
47. How good is the music?
A key factor in the game is the music. It’s simply amazing, worthy of a game with a way bigger budget. We don’t lie when we say it surpasses soundtracks of many “big” AAA games.
48. Does the music help you get in the game?
It’s not only that. The music makes you nervous and calm at the same time, it’s as if you really were in space. You get the feeling of magnificence and loneliness.
49. Who wrote the music?
A new and talented composer called Andreas Waldetoft. You can check him out in his Youtube channel and check his songs out.
50. What are the sound effects like?
They’re amazing. The sounds and effects remind you a bit of past war games, but they’re really ad hoc in some way with this futuristic game.
50. What’s the final veredict about Stellaris?
For all of this, Stellaris gets a golden pixel because the game itself has very good proposals in the strategy gender, the number of options are immense and they’ll keep you entertained for hours. The ambiance to the soundtrack and game design puts you in a world of futuristic dreams and Incredible Interstellar Wars. Despite all, charts achieve their function but aren’t excellent and the game can become so un long and tedious if you’re not used to this kind of genre. But putting that aside, the ability to create mods along with his number of events, the action of the space battles, the creator of ships and the possibility of making civilizations at your desires make Stellaris a good game of Grand Strategy which shouldn’t be ignored by PC Gamer.