Endless Space: Finally, A 4X Space Game I Can Get Excited About

When my 4X (explore, expand, exploit and exterminate) itch needs scratching, I turn to Starbase Orion. On my iPhone. That's how dire the 4X situation is on PC. Sword of the Stars 2 was just... well, ulcers spontaneously erupt on my tongue when I speak of it. I'm more than happy to recommend Masters Of Orion 2 to curious friends, or even Galactic Civilizations II for those who require something modern, but even it's six years old now. Really, we need a fresh, competent take on the genre. Endless Space might just be it.

Look at that UI! It's slick, gorgeous and... well, let's just say parts of me grew uncomfortably warm as I watched the video. Then there's the fleet battles, conducted exactly how they should be in classic line of battle style. Not an explosion of lasers and missiles and then a dreary, prolonged stoush as the AI cleans up the mess.

This is all alpha footage, by the way. Progress is going great — it's set for a winter release this year — and the feature list is ticking all the right boxes for me.

You can pre-order the game on Steam right now for $US23. Going by the video, it's an amount I'm more than willing to part with.

Endless Space: Explore The Alpha [YouTube, via RPS]


Comments

    Never played sins of a solar empire then aye?

      I can't put my finger on it, but Sins never quite clicked with me. Was excited ages ago when it was first announced -- I'm hoping this won't turn out the same way.

      I've also heard good things about Star Ruler, but haven't found the time to check it out.

        I feel ya. Even with the expansions, it always felt like Sins was lacking something, never could put my finger on it. The X space-sim games were good, and shared a similar aspect to these whilst still being rpg-based, but lacked the overall feel of the likes of GalCiv when it came to the empire building as everything was already researched, etc. You were just buying from the various races, not creating your own.

        This def worth looking at if you're into the whole 4X games

          Fair enough it comes and goes for me too, might just be the genre though not my fave, but sins seems the most accessible yet still deep and interesting one to me at least. New one out soon too will be interesting to see how it goes

    Realtimey makes a 4X purist cry.

      Actually, I'm pretty sure it's simultaneous turn-based, judging from stuff it says on the website. Frozen Synapse is amazing, the style proved itself to me there. PUMPED.

    Looks great! Thanks for putting me onto this, now I have approximately a bajillion in-progress games to keep track of :)

    Reminds me of a good version of Spore's space-stage. Now if only there were a good version of Spore...

    Homeworld 3 anyone?

      I would sacrifice many babies for this.

    WARNING: This game contains cinematic combat. May cause extreme annoyance in fans of Homeworld, Sins of a Solar Empire and Sword of the Stars.

    For those who haven't played, it's a turned based space strategy game sort of like Sword of the Stars, but with less depth. There's an extemely simplified planetary development system, and no real combat. Ship customisation exists, but it's nowhere near as detailed as in SOTS.

    Overall, Endless Space just makes me willing to give SOTS II another look in, as I dismissed in on launch due to the features cut from the first game. I hope they swap out the combat and add some more depth to the game.

      SOTS is Broken and has so many problems I dont know if it will ever be fixed. I have been trying to play it since Nov launch. They have lied about it being ready so many times I am tired of the BS. You can try it but it is really unplayable. No AI No Diplomacy nothing to make it a full game.

        None of what you say is true. Lied about it being ready? When? Where? has been out for several years and is one of the least buggy games I have ever played. There Is AI. There is Diplomacy. You may not like them but they are there.

          He obviously meant SOTS2. Which they DID lie about.
          A shame too. The original SOTS had left be a die-hard fan, but they sure cured that.

    Cmon guys, no love for Sid Meier's Alpha Centauri?

    This game is AMAZING! I've been waiting for someone to make a GOOD classic 4X space strat and these guys seem to have hit the nail in the head. Alpha phase is incredibly well polished and very playable. Best $30 I've ever spent on Steam.

    Yeah saw this a couple of days ago. i reckon it looks great, and am looking forward to giving it a whirl!

    For some reason I keep thinking Asendancy.

    i STILL play master of orion 2 on a regular basis. never gets old.
    star base orion is better on the ipad, really feels like commanding around a empire on the larger screen, then using thumbs on a tiny phone.

    really looking forward to this one

      I play it at the very least once a month.
      I keep trying new 4x's but they never EVER live up to MOO2.
      IMHO, they should re-release MOO2 completely unchanged with the exception of sexy graphics and a new online multiplayer system and I would never buy another game again.

        I just bought this and got in on the Alpha.
        ZOMGWTFBBQ...
        WHERE did the last 4 hours go?

    Masters II is still one of the best. Never got into GalCiv nor Sins. Maybe they were too complex and didn't do the basics right. Anyway, they just never grabbed me like MoOII.

    Might check this one out though.

    Got this on the weekend when it was announced on steam. Have fallen in love with it made me want to play CIV 4 again. Only cause Civ5 seems to have lost all the stuff I loved about the Civ series. But even being in Alpha this game feel very polished not complete but feels close

    pax imperia anyone? anyone...? just me.

      Not just you, and I saw someone earlier mention Ascendancy, which it also reminds me of. I think it's going to be a great game, and I can't wait for the full version.

      On another note, the planet colonization system looks very similar to Haegemonia/Reach for the Stars.

    Probably just me, but honestly, I've not been happy with much since MOO2 and also original Imperium Galactica. BITCH of a game to get working and horrendously repetitive at times, but I still can't find many games that give me as much satisfaction....cheesy story though

    This game looks like something i have happy gamer dreams over.

    I love Sins, i really do but i agree with people who say it lacks something. Its a game that needs a story mode i think, its far too sandbox for its own good.

    The original MOO (Master of Orion) still is one of my all time favorite games. MOO2 was good as well, but I prefer the original. I've played just about every game since that is a 4X Space Strategy game. I tried to get into Galactic Civilizations 1 & 2 but never could. I love Sins of a Solar Empire. It is a different type of game, but great in it's own right. Ascendency was an almost great game but was lacking. I hop this new game won't be another Ascendency. It has been a long, long time since we've had a great 4X Space Strategy Sim!

      you are so right. MOO1 is still the best. The micromanagement in M002 was so tedious. The ship design in Endless Space is overly-simplified- M001 even has more depth.

    I'm a bit late in reviewing this but...

    Cut to the chase...if you can get this for free, go for it! BUT...I would NOT buy this game at this point in its development. Definitely not worth $40, in my opinion. There are plenty of things to fix in this game that the developers have yet to address. Perhaps after several MUCH NEEDED patches and updates, this may be a viable game to consider for $40. So, give it 4-6 months, to see if things get fixed, before you decide to invest your entertianment funds on this game.

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