Stellaris Review: 3 Reasons to play
Over the past week or two I’ve found myself playing a lot of Paradox Development Studio’s grand strategy game. Every time I load it up I tell myself, “Just for a minute, I’ve got shit to do.” Then its five hours later and I’m still playing.
For those of you thinking about buying and playing this game, here are a few things about it that you should know. For those of you who are like me, there’s a TL:DR summary at the bottom.
1. Its Civilization, but in space!
The game basics are nothing new, but they are tried and true: collect resources so that you can build more stuff so that you can collect more resources. You’re main way of doing that is guys: guys that explore, guys that build things, guys that attack other guys, and even guys that make colonies in order to make more guys.
I started the game as a race of mollusk people called the Chinorr because why not.
My mom thinks I’m handsome
I explored our galaxy and put some mining stations on a few nearby planets and asteroids. I hyper-drived into an adjacent star system and found mysterious alien ruins and a habitable planet, which I colonized. I did this a second time and a third time until I found other sentient life and made contact with them. We exchanged embassies and went our separate ways.
Oh, and then some of my mining station workers decided to rebel. I know what you’re thinking, “Oh, they’re just a bunch of miners, they should be easy to kill…”
Sometimes the same, but not this time.
The thing that made it difficult was the fact that they decided to abscond with my biggest cruisers, leaving me with nothing to defend myself. They ended up terrorizing my outlying colonies and stations for almost 2 months until I managed to mount a counter assault and make examples of them. Needless to say, my people have not risen against me since.
2. You meet all kinds of crazy aliens
As soon as I made contact with one intelligent alien race a dozen more began crawling out of the woodwork. It started to get confusing who was who especially when everyone’s name is something like ‘Avtyrran’ or ‘Mect-Pux.’
I gave my empire a unique name so that I could easily pick myself out of a message or lineup.
It also lets the other races know where my priorities are
Some of these other civilizations are friendly and some of them are not.
I probably deserve that
These other empires are also given a rating based on their military and technology power compared to yours such as Inferior or Superior. But don’t start declaring war on every Pathetic alien you encounter because they could be allied with someone who is Overwhelming. I learned this the hard way.
3. You design your own space ships
A key aspect of exploring the stars is Research, which is collected like a resource and put towards chosen technologies. A lot of this research unlocks bigger and badder space ships. Everything from the sections of the ship to the individual weapons can be swapped out and upgraded using the Ship Designer.
Where’s the stereo upgrade? We’re not going anywhere without my jams
There’s also a button for automatically optimizing designs, so you don’t have to reconfigure it every time a research project finishes.
Bigger space ships come in handy when you’re elbow-to-elbow with salamanders and mushroom people. I simply declared war and started expanding my borders.
Give us your gas resources and we’ll only vaporize most of you
Once these aliens surrendered to my authority I was given the option of keeping them as subjugates, integrating them with my own empire, or purging them.
Its nothing personal, I just don’t like you
Stellaris is a detailed and beautiful game for anyone who likes micromanaging and exploration. Various species traits, research branches, and procedurally generated maps make replayability high.
Hit me up: we can play multiplayer!