There was a time when the you had little choice when it came to playing a sci-fi 4X. These days? Between Endless Space, Stellaris, Galactic Civilizations 3, Sword of the Stars, the new Master of Orion... you're spoilt for choice. But I can understand if nothing has quite scratched your itch for intergalactic politics, ship building and inevitably, planet conquering. Well, there's a new alien on the block called Stars in Shadow.
Instead of going for the shiny, super-realistic look of modern titles, Stars in Shadow is more reminiscent of older titles such MOO and Star Control. The lack of 3D graphics is replaced by a smorgasbord of detail, with every screen oozing more delicious options than an all-you-can-eat buffet.
Perhaps the most compelling aspect of Stars in Shadow is less about what it has and more what it doesn't. No gimmicks or features for the sake of being different -- it looks pretty much like a love letter to the classic 4X experience.
That's not to say it's missing some neat bells and whistles. For example, you can build a fleet of Death Stars. That's definitely new.
If you want to check it out, the game is currently 25 per cent off ($US18.74). The reviews are also sitting at a healthy 85 per cent from 77 users, which is a good sign.
Stars in Shadow [Steam]