Starry Ayes: Sword Of The Stars 2

By Jim Rossignol on July 9th, 2010 at 6:04 pm.


It’s a way off yet, being set for Q2 2011, but the 4X space sequel from Kerberos has popped out a scene-setting cinematic trailer with some rather colourful galaxy-straddling battleships, and you can check that out below. The feature lists and stuff over on the Paradox page (they’re publishing this one) are heavy on the spaceship porn: “Leviathan class of giant ships, new Battlerider-class ships that carry Destroyer sized ships, new levels of ship details including ship sub-systems, allowing for new fleet strategy and tactics!” But essentially it seems that this is going to be faithtful to the original rather solid grand space strategy and remade a new and shiny engine. We’re looking forward to getting a closer a look at this… possibly a GamesCom?

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39 Comments »

  1. Vinraith says:

    Easily my most anticipated game of 2011, everything I’ve seen indicates a refinement and improvement on the fantastic original.

  2. DK says:

    “But essentially it seems that this is going to be faithtful to the original rather solid grand space strategy and remade a new and shiny engine.”

    That’s exactly what it’s not doing. Atleast according to the Devs – there’s no point in making a shinier SotS because you already have SotS.

  3. Wolfox says:

    This is one of my “must have” games coming in 2011. I loved the first one (with all expansions, of course) and I can’t wait to see what Kerberos will do with SotS 2.

    In case anyone wonders, the other “must have” game for me in 2011 is Guild Wars 2. And it’s interesting that both my “most wanted” games are sequels that are trying to “break the mold” to do something different.

  4. wm says:

    I can’t decide which of those voices was worse.

  5. laikapants says:

    Very nice. I only just picked up the SotS pack on Steam last week and have been far too bogged down with blowing things up (Just Cause 2) to install it. Maybe this weekend.

  6. Hippo says:

    Looking forward to this one. Distant Worlds is currently sitting fairly comfortably on the 4X Space Strategy Game throne, but I’m sure SOTS 2 will be a very strong contender.

  7. Felix says:

    Ah, it wouldn’t be SotS without the terrible voice acting :)
    Still, I’m eagerly anticipating this one. Loved the first one to bits.

  8. jalf says:

    Could be interesting. SoTS was packed full of good ideas, it just never really managed to bring it all together in one cohesive game.

    So yay, maybe the sequel will pull it off.

  9. Dreamhacker says:

    In this day and age of the 4X space genre on the brink of extinction, this is definitely good news :)

    • pierec says:

      Really? I’d say it’s as good as ever if not better, only considering the stuff Paradox is publishing.

    • Arathain says:

      Seems to me like Space 4X is a niche genre that is nevertheless ticking along nicely. As well as SotS doing well enough for a sequel we have GalCiv, and what was that game that came out a little while ago with the really complex galactic empire simulation? Wasn’t it supposed to be pretty good? I would sneak AI Wars in there, even though it’s not turn based it has a very similar slow burning feel, and it’s certainly a 4X.

      Looks pretty not dead to me.

    • Vinraith says:

      @Arathain

      I’d agree that the genre seems well populated for a niche of its size. We’ve got Gal Civ 2 and SotS as you mentioned, the large scale sim you’re thinking of is probably Distant Worlds, there’s also Armada 2526 and the Space Empires games (not my thing, but loved by many). If you’re willing to bend the rules a bit to include something like AI War, I’m sure the list gets even longer.

    • Dreamhacker says:

      Well, if you are me and out of all “new” 4X games only enjoyed SOTS, it’s pretty barren out there.

      Oh well, I will always treasure my MoO2…

    • Arathain says:

      Distant Worlds. Thanks, Vinraith. That one looks absolutely fascinating. However, until I can actually pummel my goldfish-like attention span into finishing a game of AI War, and probably also a game of Fall From Heaven 2 I’m not allowed any more big 4Xs.

    • Grunt says:

      Have a look at Star Ruler too…

  10. Bruce Rambo says:

    I really wanted to like the original. I have the entire collection including Argos Naval Yards. I love space games – SEIV is one of the best things ever.

    But I can’t actually STAND SoTS. It’s aged really fast, and was never that pretty to begin with. I always find myself searching for the right button to do what I want (although most things are reputedly within three clicks from the main screen) and I found the interface itself was incredibly, incredibly ugly. Even at high res. Blank blocks of poorly contrasting orange, grey and tan? Eugh! (yes, I realise it’s something of an oblique homage to LCARS or whatever they used in star trek). The 2D art was similarly terrible – it was stylised, but in a sort of poorly drawn webcomic style with lots of strange gradient fills.

    The battle engine was lackluster – the controls were strange (though at least more responsive than Nexus: TJI) and unresponsive. Ships can have inertia, that’s fine, but they shouldn’t be unresponsive to my commands. Eventually they patched in a lot of useful feature for targetting, which is actually pretty awesome. The 3D engine itself I’m willing to give a pass – less ugly than SEV, but not particularly pretty. Some races had much better ship designs than others, but that’s par for the course.

    I’m an intelligent gamer and computer user. I mod files, run tweaks, haven’t had a virus in years, etc. Played more complex games, uglier games, worse games. I just couldn’t grok the interface I guess.

    Perhaps because the sounds were the worst I have ever heard. Random BONGs, DINGs and bubbling noises, with voice acting that doesn’t deserve the title. Even for the humans. All in incredibly low quality, even for ten years ago! I was never able to play more than a few turns in one because of this. I’ve now somehow come to associate feeling slightly ill with the end-turn sound.

    Hopefully all this will be fixed and improved upon for this iteration. There are some very clever ideas in the series. The game-enders, survival campaigns, pinpoint targetting, variety of technology (distinct between races), etc…

    What was all the hubbub about Kerberos biting at fans with regards to Fort Zombie and the last expansion for SoTS? I remember hearing something that made it sound like they’d completely lost whatever spark of admiration they had amongst fans, but from these comments perhaps my memory is going…

  11. westyfield says:

    “The flaaaaaahhhhh-shing green stripes”

    Also: THERE IS NO WINTER IN SPACE RAAARGHHH AARGGHHH, etc.

  12. Psychopomp says:

    Did you really expect someone to make a 4X game this day an ag-wait, it’s not an action game?

  13. Jimbo says:

    Leave Chamberlain alone!

    (This trailer is terrible.)

  14. Wooly says:

    For ME!??

    Tanks!!

  15. Phoshi says:

    I am entirely unsure what the definition of “winter” is in space.

    • Vinraith says:

      It’s a lore thing, not a seasons in space thing. Specifically, it’s the name of one of the races, because of how one of the other races perceives them (as “winter minded”). I don’t think it’s an especially good subtitle, myself, precisely because people that aren’t familiar with the lore of the first game aren’t going to have a clue what it means (and will likely jump to the same conclusion you did).

  16. ZIGS says:

    Before watching that trailer, I was like “Humm, I wonder what this game is about”. After I watching it, I was like “Humm, I wonder what this game is about”.

  17. pipman300 says:

    i’ve never actaully played sots but i heard they had some kind of stupid rivalry going on with gal civ

    • DK says:

      Stupid rivavly being that a reviewer monetarily involved with GalCiv giving SotS a badly explained low score.

  18. TheHumanBlur says:

    The first never clicked 100% with me, although I could definitely see the potential so I am flashing curious on this puppy. The art design however is………peculiar – possible homage to Star Control 2?

  19. Tim Dean says:

    Seasons in space, eh? What, the next sequel subtitle will be: Precis, chance for showers!

  20. Heliocentric says:

    I am excited about this, i wouldn’t buy sots but shiny, so I hope they meet the targets they have talked about. SotS could really go big if they get it right.

  21. Burningpet says:

    Those are some Badly modelled lego looking space ships, bad materials, bad lighting, bad camera work and bad voices, bad trailer is bad.

  22. Mad Doc MacRae says:

    Loved the first despite the decidedly mixed voice acting. So I’m not really put off by this (pretty amateur) trailer. Trailers and cutscenes haven’t been Kerberos’ strong suite. Awesome 4x games are.

    • Burningpet says:

      If its not their strong side, then why do it? either outsource it to a studio who can manage a proper trailer, or do something else. you do not have to make a trailer to set an atmosphere.

  23. Crispy says:

    If I were an incredibly trollish individual I’d probably be saying something like: “The only thing I was anticipating as I watched that video was my synapses to fire so I could close the browser tab”.

    There’s definitely a case for avoiding trailers that actively bore or cause actual physical wincing and recoil through ropey dialogue/voice-acting and ugly art style. On the other hand, the trailer itself has produced a news event for the game, and I have read several balanced opinions on the game’s previous iteration, which I had never played or even heard of prior to this trailer being released. If I had a lot of time on my hands and already enjoyed 4x strategy games, I’d probably be kinda interested going on some of the comments in this thread.

  24. Number6 says:

    Is the new strategy “approach from the bottom only”?