Latest PC Games - Endless Space ~ Granny Game

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Latest PC Games - Endless Space

Latest PC Games - Endless Space

Latest PC Games - Advantage of Endless Space

One from the advantages of gaming's increasingly fragmented digital landscape would be that the cracks allow niche titles to poke out in to the spotlight, and so it proves with Endless Space. An entry within the under-served 4X strategy genre, it requires explore, expand, exploit and exterminate while you build up a galactic empire, seeking domination through scientific knowledge, military might or financial success.

If you've played some of the Civilization games you already know what to expect, as Sid Meier's long-running classic series continues to be most popular instance of 4X strategy. With its sci-fi setting, Endless Space sets its sights on less well-known inspirations for example Master of Orion and Sword from the Stars, though. In the early going, this dedication proves fruitful and fans from the genre is going to be satisfied. Over the long term, however, you will find just enough hiccups to help keep it from attaining true greatness.

Right from the beginning, Endless Space defines itself with a willingness to bend to support the player. Not only can you tweak the expected parameters for example difficulty and game length, however, you can dictate the scale and shape from the galaxy you will be playing in. This in turn dictates the type of stars, by extension the type of planets readily available for your conquest.

There's a nice layer of cosmological truth towards the game too. An old galaxy, full of red giants and white dwarves, is really a tougher proposition than the usual younger galaxy full of healthy yellow suns within the prime of the life.

Latest PC Games - Eight Factions

There are eight factions to select from, providing the expected selection of specialisms. The United Empire is the default option, an expansionist mankind with corporate aspirations along with a nod within the direction of Frank Herbert's Dune, as the Pilgrims give a more spiritual, religious motivation. The Sophons are scientifically minded robots, as the Sowers tend to be more geared towards infrastructure.

The Borg-like Cravers fulfil the role of ruthless military conquerors, using the honour-obsessed Hissho mapping neatly to the Klingon archetype. There are stranger options too. The Amoeba really are a gelatinous race of high-minded explorers while Horatio is really a species composed entirely of cloned copies of the vain megalomaniac. Each includes their own strengths, weaknesses and head starts in a variety of areas, and when none appeal you'll be able to customise them yourself, applying over 90 traits to skew the overall game to your exact tastes.

From there, things unfold much while you'd expect. You start served by just one star system for your name, along with a handful of spaceships. Use the scout ship to understand more about nearby stars, and colony ships to spread your empire towards the planets orbiting them. Military ships could be combined into fleets as high as seven craft, and allotted to defend any system from attack.

Things will vary in a few key areas, however. The research tree is split up into four instead of following a single flow. Military improvements sprawl in one direction, while technologies which help with colonising, diplomacy and commerce have their very own off-shoots.

It's a fascinating idea, however it doesn't really alter the fundamental rock, paper, scissors nature of combat in 4X strategy games, and instead lends proceedings a somewhat random feel. The influence of those decisions is really small which it really only impacts encounters in which the combatants are evenly matched, which almost never happens.

Latest PC Games - Overall Game

4X strategy thrives within the long term, therefore it is a real shame which it's deep into the overall game that the minor flaws in Endless Space's mechanisms make themselves most keenly felt. Strategy fans really should not be too discouraged though. The foundations laid here certainly don't lack for depth or entertainment, and it is perfectly possible that the few tweaks and balances within the right places - either in the developer or even the mod community - will elevate Endless Space in to the genre great it should be.


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