It's a great week to make new spacefriends, thanks to the launch of the new Federations expansion for Stellaris. As the name suggests, Federations expands the options for galactic friendship in Paradox's sci-fi 4X strategy game. Now you can join a Galactic Union, Trade League, Research Cooperative, Martial Alliance, or Hegemony, different types of federation with different goals and perks. And get into new sorts of trouble.
Along with the diplomatic doodads, Federations adds new things to build including the Mega Shipyard and a Juggernaut ship class which comes with its own manufacturing and repair facilities.
Stellaris: Federations is out now on Steam, GOG, and Paradox Plaza for £15.49/€19.99/$19.99. All three stores are currently holding Stellaris sales too, with 75% off the base game and most DLCs half-price.
Our Nate and familiar face Nic Reuben are planning to play some Federations together later this week and tell us all about it.
As is typical for Paradox strategy games, a big patch with tweaks, new features, and fixes for all players also arrived today. The patch notes for version 2.6.0 (codenamed 'Verne', after Doc Brown's son in Back To The Future Part III) detail new diplomacy features including envoys and diplomatic stances, performance improvements, crash fixes, a new Origins system with options like starting as a lost colony of a stronger civ, a few focused AI improvements, and balance changes including an overhaul of Empire Sprawl and making strike craft less useless. Also, this is just brutal:
When terraforming a planet to a Machine World, any non-cyborg Biological pops will be killed off and an Organic Slurry deposit will be added. Determined Exterminators will gain 100 unity per pop killed this way.
And this scenario is just fun to imagine:
The Shard dragon will now destroy the colony on its planet if you have settled it to avoid Criminal Syndicates having a scary dragon protecting their final planet.
I do sympathies here:
Fixed a number of literally unpalyable typos.
Fixed a rare case where the event "Party Aftermath" could produce a half-breed between members of the same species.
You can read more about the expansion and update features in Paradox's dev diaries too.
Stellaris is one of the best space games, sez us, and one of the best strategy games too. I myself have not blasted off in a while so I'm honestly not sure what it's like these days. I know Paradox have replaced big chunks of it since I last played a few expansions ago. I should check back in. Hmm. Not got a lot going on at the moment.