Posted: 4 months ago, last updated 3 months ago.
You can pick a starting species, or create your own from scratch. You pick positive and negative traits for your species to possess, that affect everything from fighting to diplomacy. You then choose the ethics and guiding principles that govern your new empire. Each principle grants you certain enhancements, but also restricts how you play. A spiritualist empire, for example, can't use robots. You can also pick the origin of your empire, be it a fractured people's desperate escape from a dying world or a powerful dynasty built on slaves.
Play starts on a single world with a few resources and ships, but soon expands into the galaxy. Your final goals is dependent on your principles and ethics, be it peaceful coexistence with neighbouring systems, total domination or a small but wealthy colony bursting with resources.
As you progress, you fight other worlds in real-time combat, where the focus is on the bigger picture rather than individual ships. Each opponent requires a different strategy, or possible a diplomatic solution. Finding ways to share power and resources with the other planets and civilisations is a great benefit. But don't forget to look after your current worlds, assigning governors, collecting tributes and more.
It's an incredibly deep and complex game, where the power is in your hands to forge a story of your own making; be it one of total domination or simple living.
Cross-Platform: Play between Mac and PC
You can play this game in the following styles:
Account RatingYou need be 18-years-old to to subscribe to Xbox Live Gold for online play, but can then configure family accounts for younger players to play online with Xbox One.
You need be 18-years-old to subscribe to PlayStation Plus for online play, but can create sub-accounts for younger players of 7-years or older to play online with PlayStation 4.
Additional in-game purchases are offered for items that enhance the experience.
You need to purchase a PlayStation Plus subscription to play online with PlayStation 4.
You need to purchase a Xbox Live Gold subscription to play online with Xbox One. There have been several expansion packs to the game which have added more content and ways to play.
On consoles, there is also the choice between the Deluxe and Standard Editions, the difference being that the Deluxe Edition comes with 3 of these packs (Plantoids Species Pack, Leviathans Story Pack, and Utopia expansion) pre-installed, but you can still buy them even if you get the Standard Edition.
As well as being able to change the difficulty of the game, there are also numerous ways you can make the game more easy or difficult; by altering the hostility of neighbours to altering their strength, and depending on the traits you give yourself the game will vary in difficulty.
While you can adjust the size of the UI, some of the text will still appear small and does not always contrast well with the background. The UI itself hosts a huge amount of information that can easily become overwhelming to new players.
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