Remember how there were a few big 4X games coming out this year? We've already had Stellaris early on, and the Master of Orion reboot launched just last month. But there's one title on the horizon that's still in the works. It's Endless Space 2, and it's looking a bit great.
A video released this morning is the first major segment of gameplay footage and the initialisation process for the space 4X since the developers, Amplitude Studios, were bought out by SEGA. And if you're a fan of the original game, you'll be pretty pleased with what's being introduced.
Most of the structure from the original has been retained. There's still a focus on "cinematic" combat, for instance, the most heavily criticised facet from the original game. But there's also a ramped focus on minor factions, which now have their own systems and fleets that you can barter and trade with.
And in what seems to be taking a cue from Stellaris, ES2 is adding races, or factions, to the management of your colonies. The races have varying impacts on your civilisation, and they can also vote and pass on laws that have empire-wide effects.
There's a ton of cool stuff to unpack. The ground combat also looks cool, even if in practice people will probably just skip to the end result the majority of the time. It'll be keen to see what kind of improvements Amplitude has made to the combat.
Endless Space 2 is launching in Early Access later this month, with a full release slated for 2017. Given the number of 4X fans amongst you fine readers, I can imagine we'll end up playing a game together at some point.