Find Space: Stellaris Alpha Mod Adds Loads Of Changes

When I gathered my favourite Stellaris [official site] mods last month, there were just over 2,000 brimming from its Steam Workshop – an impressive number, given the game had only been out for five weeks or so at that point. Three weeks on and almost 500 have since been added to the collection, one of which just missed my roundup cut: the Stellaris Alpha Mod.

Not only does the ambitious modification add over 60 new buildings, 17 new resources and seven new edicts, among a range of other things, creator AlphaAsh has since been actively planning new features, taking suggestions from players and fixing bugs, all of which suggests the Alpha Mod will only get bigger. To infinity… and beyond etc.

Well, perhaps not infinite, but the extensive catalogue of buildings – which AlphaAsh notes is “always out-of-date” – the Stellaris Alpha Mod does add includes the likes of: Atmosphere Generators, ideal for producing and maintaining atmosphere on rocks without them; Exo Barracks and Exo Operations, sealed domes for both residential and operational purposes; Grand Citadels and Grand Retreats, huge urban military fortress and urban centres, the latter of which allows citizens to “hide themselves from the rest of the galaxy”; and Water Excavators, an industrial-scale well for mining water from below the planet’s surface.

Ice, water, biomass and natural fuels make up some of the new resources, and new spaceport models – including trade ports and border controls – are just a few of the more superficial-leaning tweaks the mod makes available. Honestly, the list is huge, so be sure to check it out in its entirety over here, with change notes located in this direction. Also, this handy FAQ answered the majority of initial queries I had – like whether or not AI has access to the new stuff – and will save you trawling through the mod’s lengthy comments section.

While I can’t be sure if it’ll appease those who’ve struggled with Stellaris’ victory conditions, the Alpha Mod adds a staggering amount of new stuff which helps improve an already spectacular game. Stellar job AlphaAsh. Sorry.

(I’m not sorry.)

From this site

18 Comments

  1. vorador says:

    Wow this is like a free expansion. Great job.

    Here’s six tentacles up out of six.

  2. Matt_W says:

    Might this be the same AlphaAsh who is responsible for the Kerbin Side mod for Kerbal Space Program, which adds a ton of new buildings and locations to Kerbin?

  3. Zenicetus says:

    The FAQ says “The AI pretty much uses everything this mod adds, and when I note it doesn’t, I endeavour to make sure it does.”

    That’s good, but I wonder how efficiently the AI uses the new stuff compared to the player. I assume the AI has some hard-coded strategies for expansion based on the vanilla tech trees and building lists, so I wonder if this makes the AI less competitive? Has anyone here played the game enough with this mod to comment on that?

    • LexW1 says:

      I’ve not played the mod, but I don’t think the AI in Paradox Grand Strategy games uses hard-coded building lists etc (I could be totally wrong). I presume this because with the mods for all their other Paradox GS games, they often have completely different setups as to what you can build, yet the computer takes good advantage (unlike, say, some Civ mods and the like historically). I think the issue is when a mod does something entirely outside what the computer can understand – i.e. where a capability is added entirely outside the basic game.

      Even then, unless the mod is reliant on that capability, it’s likely it does a “good enough” job. It’s not like the AI is some sort of cut-throat knife-edge precision deal.

      • AlphaAsh says:

        Agreed. If anything Paradox have gone over-board with ‘try until give up’ code with the AI, which makes the game rock-solid and the AI flexible and robust. Just not particularly precise.

  4. Monggerel says:

    Remind me again when you can build a Ringworld and/or destroy it with off-license Gridfire. Cuz this game, like all other space 4x, is just the usual RTS on a starry background.

    • Haldurson says:

      What makes it more than ‘the usual RTS’, imho, is the diplomacy (albeit, as flawed as it is), the random events, and the mini-stories. I can’t completely defend it in its entirety because I have my own issues with the game (which are not enough to actually condemn it, and I have hope that a lot of my misgivings will be appeased in the next major update). If you think that it is ‘the usual RTS’, then you either quit playing quite early, or you are missing the forest for the trees.

      • Monggerel says:

        I’m missing the forest for the blazing fucking wildfire at the end of the universe.
        That I’m not seeing.
        Anywhere. Because it isn’t there and I’m missing it super hard.

        Er… that was a bit hostile. Apologies. I really do feel strongly that Stellaris is a complete and utter bullshit letdown. Imperium Galactica II is 17 years old now, and had the same event-based story structure in its campaign. Admittedly it had premade races only, and only three campaigns, but those were some galactic goddamn campaigns.
        The Solarians (humans) sought (and feared the cult of) immortality, which was either a victory or failure condition, depending on how you handled the ensuing crisis when it turned out the crazy religious zealot a thousand years ago was actually correct.
        The Shinari were the super-diplomat super-spies whose job was to run things from the background. They couldn’t fight for shit directly, but they could destabilize just about anyone else…
        And then the Kra’hen. In the other campaigns, they are the firing squad at the end of the universe. An unstoppable army of murder-worshipping zealots whose sole purpose is the elimination of all life save their own. So committed that they literally cannot use Diplomacy or Espionage throughout the game. And you get to play as them.
        These are fun stories to play! Even if they are premade, and the events are only semi-random.
        Stellaris adds nothing new to this structure besides randomization and noise, and I resent that.

        Oh yeah and you got a planet-cracker bomb to blow up people you don’t like. That was fun.

        /Ranty mc Rantpants

        • Monggerel says:

          //The Rant at the End of the Universe Really Overused the Phrase “at the End of the Universe” Quite Liberally and Wishes to Apologize//

    • sithalo says:

      most space 4x games are not just rts games with starry backgrounds. most that ive played are not even rts games. theres alot that sepeartes a 4x game from a regular rts game even if it does have real time combat.

      the only way to really see space 4x games as rts games with starry backgrounds is pretty much to just sum up what happens in them and discard all the stuff they do differently.

      and really for the ones that have rts moments that is what they are because thats the mechanic, thats like complaining that all fzero games or wipeout games are just racing games with hover cars as if it was a bad thing they where racing games with hover cars

      and theres nothing wrong with them if they are rts games with starry backgrounds because theres nothing wrong with being an rts game.

  5. Arglebargle says:

    Usually don’t care for the ‘all inclusive’ mods, as they too often have ‘good bits and bad bits’ intermixed. On the other hand, too many small mods generally lead to the game crashing. The woes of choice.

    And while it is sometimes difficult to parse such things on the internet, the mod author came across as…snooty.

  6. NephilimNexus says:

    Paradox should pay this guy for finishing their damn game for them.

  7. Battleaxebro says:

    Love AlphaAsh commitment on this thread.

  8. ironaweindustries@gmail.com says:

    They made a DEEP game with limited resources, but it can be much more by being mod-able. Victory conditions could be somewhat here link to forum.paradoxplaza.com

  9. ironaweindustries@gmail.com says:

    Victory conditions that are kind of ridiculous to achieve but give you something to aim for….
    Strategic Resource Victory – control 10 Dark Mater or some realistic figure based on the map size
    Science Victory – Research a big end game technology in each category in all three categories. Your federation can contribute.
    Diplomatic Victory – Accumulate a certain number of trust points. Negative trust works against this number.
    Spiritualist Victory – Control 90% of Spiritualist pops and own “the holy world”
    Materialist Victory – Produce more minerals and energy that all other empires combined
    Enlightened Victory – have more happiness that all other empires combined
    Despotic Superiority Victory – Enslave 8 pops of every Species in the galaxy
    Scorn of the Galaxy Victory – Have more of your original species than all other species combined.
    Ecological Victory – Terra-form a difficult number of planets to one type.