Command a space-faring empire in Sins of a Solar Empire: Rebellion, the new stand-alone expansion that combines 4X depth with real-time strategy gameplay.
User reviews: Overwhelmingly Positive (3,147 reviews)
Release Date: Jun 12, 2012

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Recommended By Curators

"A space-based RTS with light 4x elements. Rebellion, added enough content to make it worthwhile. Expect more macro than micro."
Read the full review here.

Reviews

“Bigger and more stable than ever, Sins of a Solar Empire: Rebellion will happily strip-mine your life of its free time.”
86/100 – PC Gamer
“...this is the ultimate version of Sins of a Solar Empire...”
8.5/10 – Strategy Informer
"...Sins embraces its grand strategy like never before."
5/5 – Quarter to Three
“As a standalone expansion, it does very well at balancing between long time Sins fans and newcomers to the series.”
9/10 – RTS Guru

About This Game

The Next Installment to the Award-Winning RTS.
While many were hopeful that diplomacy would finally end the war, differing opinions on what should be done, along with the depleted power of the controlling factions, has led to a splintering of the groups involved.

The loyalist members of the Trader Emergency Coalition adopt a policy of isolation, focusing on enhanced defenses to ride out the rest of the war. Those who rebel against the coalition take on a purely militant view, coming to the opinion that the only way to bring peace is by ultimately crushing all who oppose them - especially xenos.

For the first time in their history, the war creates a schism in the Advent Unity. The loyalists seek to continue their policy of revenge against the Traders, and to assimilate all others to the Unity’s influence. However, others amongst the Advent suspect that a corrupting influence from within has diverted the Unity from its proper destiny.

The divide created in the Vasari Empire is less pronounced, but just as severe to their people. With the Vasari now practically frantic to move on to new space, the loyalist faction abandons cooperation and decides to take the resources they need by any means necessary. Having accepted the need to work together, the rebel faction feels that their best chance for survival is to work with the other races and bring them along to flee the approaching enemy.

Take the battle for galactic supremacy to its ultimate level in Sins of a Solar Empire: Rebellion – a standalone RT4X game that combines the tactics of real-time strategy with the depth of the 4X genre (eXplore, eXpand, eXploit, eXterminate).

Key features:

  • New Factions: Decide whether to play as a Loyalist or Rebel – each unlocks new technologies, ships and play styles for each race.
  • New Titan Class Warships: Mighty titans enter the fray of the war to tip the scales of power. Each faction may field their own unique titan, drawing upon unique strengths and abilities on the battlefield.
  • New and Updated Capital Ships: A new capital ship joins the fleet for each race to offer even more tactical options. Additionally, all existing capital ships have been upgraded to four levels for their abilities, allowing players to focus their ships along specific strengths.
  • New Corvette Class Ships: Small and maneuverable, each faction has developed a new light attack craft to harass enemy forces.
  • Updated Visuals: Updated graphics, particle effects, lighting and shadows, race specific UI and other enhancements make the Sins’ universe look better than ever.
  • New Victory Conditions: Take multiple paths to victory including – Military, Diplomatic, Research, Last Flagship Standing, Last Capital Standing and Occupation.
  • New Audio: More than 60 minutes of original music, countless new sound effects and dozens of new voice overs help bring the drama of battle to new levels of immersion.
  • Tutorials: New and updated tutorials make it easy for both experienced and new players to quickly start building their own solar empire.
  • Plus, a number of optimizations that provide better performance than ever before!

System Requirements

    Minimum:
    • OS: Windows 8 / Windows 7 SP1 / Windows Vista SP2
    • Processor: 3 GHz Intel Pentium 4 Processor or Equivalent
    • Memory: 2 GB Available System Memory
    • Graphics: 256 MB Video Card w/Pixel Shader 3.0 Support (Radeon X1650 / GeForce
      6800* or Better)

    • DirectX®: 9.0c
    • Hard Drive: 5 GB HD space
    • Sound: DirectX 9.0c Compatible Sound Card
    • Other Requirements: Keyboard and Mouse (w/scroll wheel), Broadband Internet connection for Multiplayer
    • * NVidia video chipsets must use driver version 296.10 or higher and mobile cards be set as the primary video chipset for the game.
    Recommended:
    • Processor: Intel Core i5/i7 Processor or Equivalent
    • Memory: 4 GB Available System Memory
    • Graphics: 1 GB Video Card w/Pixel Shader 3.0 Support (Radeon X3000 Series / GeForce 8000* Series or Better)
    • Other Requirements:Broadband Internet connection, also to activate this game you must create a Stardock account while launching the game on Steam.
Helpful customer reviews
213 of 225 people (95%) found this review helpful
92.4 hrs on record
Posted: November 3
-
Click for Gameplay Trailer - Review
-
Graphics:
+ nice looking space
+ beautiful effects
+ clear optics
- weak details

Balance:
+ 6 KI difficulties
+ for advanced and professionals demanding
- novices might struggle with it.

Sound:
+ nice music and sound effects
- only a few text set to music

Atmosphere:
+ huge space fights
+ exciting empire expansion in space
- lifeless galaxy

Game Size:
+ many scenarios, map editor and random maps
+ many possible settings
+ 3 factions with 2 sub factions
+ big tech tree
- no race or ship editor

Units:
+ powerful titans
+ units gain exp
+ ship abilities

Sins of a Solar Empire Rebellion returns gamers to the rich universe of this franchise as players engage in another "Realtime 4X" experience which stands for "explore, expand, exploit and exterminate".
However at its heart, manage your empire through micro and macro gaming management. Players start with one planet where they need to commence their advancement of their tech tree.
By improving the technology at your disposal, this allows you to conquer the stars and find other suitable planets to expand your empire.

Gameplay remains focused on building a space empire in the far future through constructing massive battle fleets, colonizing planets and asteroids, gathering metal and crystal resources, stuffing the bank account full of credits, engaging other species diplomatically, and even spreading your culture across the spaceways like some kind of interstellar Roman Empire.

In Rebellion, Ironclad Games legitimately buffs up Sins of a Solar Empire's graphical engine, enhancing visual effects and allowing for more stuff to happen smoothly on the screen at once. Rebellion also adds three "new" factions (more on that in a second).
Also new are the Corvette and Titan class ships. Titans are gigantic, superweapon-esque battle platforms that can single-handedly take on flotillas of enemy vessels.
They also have powerful "buffs" they can impart to friendly ships, making your side able to take and dish out more damage.
Despite all of their abilities, Titans are not overpowered. You need to research a lot of tech to enhance their weaponry and damage capability, and move them up in level before they hit their full potential. Even then, Titans need allies, or enemy fleets can whittle them down to nothing.

- Vasari Loyalists, for instance, have a hate on for pretty much all other races, and can eat planets.
- Vasari Rebels, on the other hand, are more easygoing when it comes to buddying up with other species, and they specialize in nanotechnology.
- TEC Loyalists are all about defense, with cheaper starbases and the ability to deploy two of these behemoths around planets.
- TEC Rebels are all about conquest and can ally with pirates and neutrals to go on the offensive.
- Advent Loyalists are aggressive mind-controllers out to assimilate enemies.
- Advent Rebels are a little more on the spiritual side and can revive destroyed ships.

Graphically, Rebellion is a good looking game on the PC, especially on full detail. Even though at times the graphics may seem a little bland, there is some great attention to detail in the game, and some really cool particle effects when enemies are blown to hell.
There are some nice cut scenes that assist in the overall story telling of the title. Finally a great soundtrack and some subtle sound effects that assist in immerging you into this intergalactic battle or loyalists and rebels of the various factions. All in all, gameplay, graphics and sound comes together in a way that makes this an addictive yet entertaining gaming experience.

This is an excellent game, with loads of new options and an incredible amount of tactical depth, it does show the age of the series. Until that game launches, however, you can get your space-empire fix from this outstanding stand-alone expansion, which contains enough ways to conquer a galaxy to tide you over for a very long time.


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28 of 30 people (93%) found this review helpful
13.2 hrs on record
Posted: July 2
If you've never experienced Sins of a Solar Empire before, you'll find no better entry point than Rebellion. But if Rebellion commits any sins of its own, it's in the 37$ price tag, which seems excessive for an expansion that will almost certainly strike its loyal fans as little more than a meaty content patch.Sins of a Solar Empire: Rebellion adds some nice features to a great, proven winner of a game. Those features are nice, but as nice as they are, I couldn't really see myself running out and throwing down nearly forty bucks for this standalone expansion if I already owned the original Sins, to say nothing of its expansion packs.But on the other hand, Sins of a Solar Empire: Rebellion is an outstanding and unique real-time strategy game that offers a welcome, slower alternative to StarCraft 2's intense pacing. As a life-long fan of sci-fi space battles, I simply can't help but strongly recommend it.The important part here is that Sins of a Solar Empire still delivers a very unique kind of strategy game, and Rebellion doesn't screw with that; instead, it makes that base game substantially smoother and more interesting.
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16 of 16 people (100%) found this review helpful
13.1 hrs on record
Posted: December 1
TL:DR? See Conclusion

INTRODUCTION:
Sins of a Solar Empire: Rebellion is a massive real-time strategy game developed by Ironclad Games and published by Stardock Entertainment. It is the third standalone expansion in the popular Sins of a Solar Empire line of games and stands as testament to why this genre can only work with the PC Platform. Although the game is classified as an RTS, it does feature a lot of 4X (Civilization type) elements which the developers are calling the 'RT4X' genre.

The player takes control of a space faring civilization whose sole objective is to be the most dominant force in the Galaxy. Achieve this either through military force, diplomatic means or economic superiority. Lead your civilization from a small single planet colony into a vast interplanetary empire spanning multiple worlds and multiple star systems.

PROS:
+ Epic in scale (The player can choose to either play in one solar system only, or expand their empire to other solar systems if the map permits)
+ Massive space combat and intense fleet engagements
+ Beautiful Graphics and Visuals
+ Good ship and space station variety
+ Ship and space station customization and upgrades
+ Complex and solid core gameplay
+ Simple and easy to manage Empire Tech Tree
+ Incorporates the features of the previous expansions without forcing you to buy them
+ High replayability
+ Seamless Zoom Function (Marvel at your fleet or the intense ship on ship combat)
+ Playable even with some lower end computers
+ Modding potential (Example: See Star Trek 3 Armada mod)

CONS:
- No Campaign mode and even if there was...(see below)
- Story is negligible
- Steep learning curve
- Capital/Titan Ships and Space stations have no hardpoints (see Star Wars: Empire at War space combat)
- Only three main factions to play (although there are 6 sub-factions)
- Stardock Account Management

CONCLUSION:
GREAT GAME but NOT FOR EVERYONE. If you're the type of gamer who's really into real-time strategy or 4X games and have a lot of free time to burn, then this game would be great. It's massive in scale with dozens of ships clashing in some of the most epic space warfare I have ever seen. Outside of combat, it has a good and complex empire management system akin to the 4X genre. The game also runs surprisingly well with the last generation computer systems since its game engine still only need the system requirements back in 2008 when it was first released.

GOOD BUY and HIGHLY RECOMMENDED for Space, Sci-Fi, RTS and 4X fans.

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14 of 14 people (100%) found this review helpful
95.4 hrs on record
Posted: August 4
I love this game. While there are some similarities to other 4x games, this one combines the right mix of fleet combat (w/ great graphics and sound effects) with expansion and building. Thankfully, they did not overdo it with the planet building and trading aspects. There is just enough to make it an integral part of the game, yet they do not weigh it down. I've enjoyed the single player game as well as multiplayer online. Sometimes it is difficult to find people who will play for hours online (my last game was 4 hours almost exactly). However, if someone quits, the A.I. takes over, even if it was the initial host. The A.I. is not the absolute greatest, but it is capable of making you work for a victory. If you want to command a fleet or many fleets and conquer the galaxy, planet-by-planet, you will likely enjoy this game.
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14 of 15 people (93%) found this review helpful
485.9 hrs on record
Posted: September 27
This game as one Amazing game. i have something i really want steam to do. it is make a Workshop for maps mods and other stuff like Vessels, Starbases and other crazy stuff. some Problems i have are the Capital Ship Cap and Fleet Cap and Sometimes i want to use a Cheat that is good that alows me to Give me more Stuff so i can make a HUGE Fleet of Capital ships and i want to make mods of my own thing
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15 of 18 people (83%) found this review helpful
17.1 hrs on record
Posted: November 22
Excellent RTS Game, The mods for this game are also incredible like Dawn of the Reapers (Mass Effect), Sins of a Galactic Empire (Star Wars) and Sins of the Prophets (Halo). I downloaded the Halo mod before i even got the game itself, haha.
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9 of 9 people (100%) found this review helpful
18.1 hrs on record
Posted: October 14
Very well made with great gameplay! If you love big space battles this is the game for you!
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9 of 9 people (100%) found this review helpful
93.4 hrs on record
Posted: November 27
I am a ruler of a facist goverment that murders millions, of billions of augmented humans, humans, and aliens. I destroy entire planets with intergalatic super weapons.


But no one really cares because free healthcare.
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8 of 8 people (100%) found this review helpful
33.5 hrs on record
Posted: September 29
Space Strategy enthusiasts rejoice: real-time strategy meets 4X rules in a seamlessly zoomable universe that hasn't looked or felt this polished since the original Homeworld game. Marketed as a stand-alone expansion for Sins of a Solar Empire, Rebellion basically sums up every mechanic introduced in every expansion to date - fight off pirates and opposing empires, establish trade routes, colonize or raise every planet in your solar system... and beyond. It has the same addictiveness as Civilization, in that you feel like you're playing a board game in which your faction fights to rule the universe using various tools or domination and manipulation, every match a new iteration in the array of destinies you can forge. On top of that, the space battles are impressive in both scale and effects: tons of freaking laser beams, rockets and machine gun fire keep you at the edge of your seat when a few hundred ships in your fleet meet a few hundred of your opponents' craft and clash in a display of fireworks that is so visceral and pretty it blows your brains out and leaves you slack jawed at the display of awesomeness.

BUY it if you:
-Enjoy RTS games and civ builders alike.
-Want to engage in large-scale space battles with budget hardware (the game's zoom function works like a miracle, letting you join in on epic skirmishes or zoom out to manage your home planet in the blink of an eye).
-Always wanted to recreate the Dominion assault on Deep Space Nine or some other notoriously nerdy science fiction scene you're almost embarassed you enjoy so much.

DO NOT BUY it if you:
-Hate the pacing of RTS games (learning hotkeys, developing effective build orders and being fast in setting your bases is essential to mastering Sins of a Solar Empire, and if you need time to think things through, you might be better off waiting for Civilization: Beyond Earth for your 4X fix).
-Expect a campaign or any kind of predesigned narrative - Rebellion has none.
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9 of 10 people (90%) found this review helpful
10.2 hrs on record
Posted: November 2
Think Age of Empires. Then think Rome: Total War. Now throw those games into space and fast-foward a couple thousand years, and you'll get Sins of a Solar Empire. This game takes space combat where it has never gone before. The arrray of different ships is vast, the visuals stunning, and the game play rewarding. You can zoom the map all the way out to view 5 solar systems at once, or zoom all the way down to a single fighter as it zips around a mind-bogglingly large and colorful battle.

My only complaint is that sometimes the game can feel too big, if you are playing on the largest map scale, and you find yourself waiting for a good 5 minutes as your fleet traverses one system to the next in search of the enemy. Build scouts!
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9 of 10 people (90%) found this review helpful
80.0 hrs on record
Posted: November 9
VERY addictive game that takes ALOT of time per game, The mechanics are very rounded and well thought out and gameplay is immersive. games are quite slow at first due to resource rate and the ammount of time needed to start to grow ingame. However once started it can be very difficult and fast paced.

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7 of 7 people (100%) found this review helpful
344.3 hrs on record
Posted: October 12
A truly wonderful space based RTS. The 3 races play very differently from one another and the sub-factions are distinct enough to make you change your style depending on whether you're the Loyalists or Rebels.

The game's pace can be easily adjusted in the pregame options to suit your skill and the AI does a good job of building counters to your units (e.g. you build long range, AI builds corvettes). Having said that, the AI has a greater emphasis on the Artifical as opposed to Intelligence as it essentially attempts to win through attrition.

But such AI strategies are to be expected and, in my opinion, lead to some pretty epic battles. Build a starbase on a key chokepoint and station a fleet there to try and hold the line, if you're playing Hard or higher the AI will be charging your line in no time with capital ships, frigates, corvettes, cruisers and even titans.

The game is also extremely moddable. If you can read this review you can mod a good portion of Sins of a Solar Empire: Rebellion. There are also tonnes of mods already created (Halo, Star Wars, Star Trek, etc.).

Finally, while the game does not have a campaign I personally feel this is no loss. Honestly ask yourself, "Would I play the campaign more than three times?" Probably not unless there was some meaningful reward (which would be difficult to work into the game). As a result, the omission of a four to eight hour campaign is no big loss.

I could go on and on but I'm worried you'll keep reading when you should just go get the game already!
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7 of 8 people (88%) found this review helpful
26.9 hrs on record
Posted: October 9
Awesome graphics and mechanics. A lot to research, a lot of ships, diplomacy (if you want), oh and fancy explosions.
Also: SPAACE
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6 of 7 people (86%) found this review helpful
47.3 hrs on record
Posted: July 16
Too ruggedly professional to die, 2008 sleeper hit Sins of a Solar Empire has returned. Titled Rebellion, this third expansion comes in a new, expandalone format, and adds just about everything except actual rebellion. Silly developers!

Sins has aged well, partly because its only competitor, Sword of the Stars II, flopped harder than a snake slipping off a diving board, but also because its appeal is still intact. As you develop your empire, swinging from planet to planet, tumbling down the tech tree, stringing together fleets and levelling up your capital ships, the game simply gives you a bit too much to think about.

It’s uncanny. As a beginner, you’ll have your hands (and head) full developing trade routes and continuing the electric push of your culture across the solar system, perhaps with one eye on your prize fleet, making sure it’s still winning some 20-minute pitched battle. But experts will be kept just as busy micromanaging the powers on individual ships, perhaps leaping home to oversee the construction of a Maginot Line-like array of turrets, before snapping up the diplomacy menu to offer a job, a ceasefire, a demand, then back to the fight.

Sins’ sweet spot is that it always threatens to overwhelm, but rarely does. This isn’t the riptide real-time strategy of StarCraft II. It’s more sedate than that. But the game simply has so much going on, its every element rewarding not just attention but obsession, that you’re able to sink into it like a hot bath. Want to fling armadas around as if they were plastic toys? You’ll have a great time. Want to orchestrate your fleets like an interplanetary Rommel? You’ll see the rewards instantly.

Which brings us to what Rebellion adds. Perhaps most notably, it still doesn’t add a singleplayer campaign, leaving you to fool around either online or in the excellently robust skirmish mode. Which is fine. There’s also a whole new suite of tutorials, which prepare you for everything – except how to deal with this much content.

Sins’ three relatively asymmetrical races have been further rent into Rebel and Loyalist variants, each of which holds a new teasing selection of powerful abilities and a unique Titan. We’ll get to those. Loyalist TEC, for example, are a turtle’s dream, with one tech that increases experience gained fighting in their own space and another that lowers the cost of the horrible Novalith Cannon (which lets them slam-dunk nukes into distant gravity wells). Meanwhile, the nomadic Vasari Loyalists gain the power to summon NPC vagabonds and devour planets like so many Mars Bars.

There are new corvettes and capital ships for each faction, too, but the Titans are the stars of the show. Monstrously expensive and perfectly suited to a long-form game like Sins, it’s likely the fiercest fighting these behemoths will see will be attacks by wary players on their sprawling dockyard before they’re completed.

As with everything else in the game, however, they strike a thoughtful balance. Completing a Titan is by no means a ‘win’ button, but the automated report that another player has finished one still instils a gentle dread.

Outside of the lack of a singleplayer campaign, about the only criticism that could be levelled at Rebellion is that it’s not much of a looker anymore. But you know what? When you jump some 50 ships on top of an enemy fleet, announcing your presence in a flutter of missiles and hot burps of laser fire, you just can’t tear your eyes away.
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6 of 7 people (86%) found this review helpful
257.7 hrs on record
Posted: June 29
O_o I don't know what day it is. I know not the year... but if you are reading this, i advise you to stay away. It is too late for me. If you are reading this please, tell my family i've always hated them. But In the name of science stay far away.

Back in the time of innocence, in the time where my mental frame was at the apex of stability and lucidity I was enticed by such a radiant bedazzlement of flickering colors and hues. Ooh look at the pretty lights. I was entranced into a euphoric stupor by such tantalizing melodies. Ahh my ears ahh. I was in a complete state of bliss. But it was a trap. It induces you into such a state only to lull you down, down, down into the spiraling abyss of addiction from whence no light will find return. You lose all sense of you, of time and urgency, and suddenly find yourself gazing upon the incomprehensible faculties of you inner functions questioning the greater scheme of our vast cosmic ocean.

So, yeah the game is good. It may not have the level of depth and complexity of Civ V but it does have exciting fast paced RTS action (IN SPACE) for all you Armchair general enthusiast. Definitely the game to go to, to live out your starship armada fantasies. Not to mention the modding community is one of the best, perpetually adding life and fidelity to a 2 year+ standalone game. Star Wars, Star Trek, Babylon 5, Stargate, Halo or Mass Effect Reaper mods anyone?
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5 of 6 people (83%) found this review helpful
25.7 hrs on record
Posted: October 26
Great game to play with your friends. Complex gameplay experience. Tons of paths to dominate. 8/10!
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5 of 6 people (83%) found this review helpful
92.9 hrs on record
Posted: October 29
A typical RTS / Resource Game. $3.79 on sale, I can't complain. Overall the game is simple and the AI can be challenging if your playing on insane and custom map modes. The game can get bogged down if too many statics are on the map pending the size and the amount of planets / Stars / Ships / Players etc, etc. It does get repetitive and a bit boring when your playing against a 12 player map A.I. and has taken 30+ hours and 80+ auto saves to beat. There are plenty of mods for the game that can and will add more depth and envision into the game, like (Star Trek, Star Wars, FreeLancer) etc. mods and some patch mods for better playability. Overall it is a decent game for the price and can kill time like no tomarrow. one game can take not just hours, but days to finish even if you are a pro or novice.
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4 of 5 people (80%) found this review helpful
1,420.3 hrs on record
Posted: September 23
This is by far one of the best RTS games every made. A vibrant modding community makes this game very repayable for years.
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5 of 7 people (71%) found this review helpful
401.4 hrs on record
Posted: November 8
Fantastic Game! Nuf said, I would say its better than Starcraft 1&2 However it does lack a Single player campaign, and mods arn't as easy to install as Skrim, but its still a very diverse and fun game to play
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
63.0 hrs on record
Posted: June 28
Alrighty, as a hardcore enthusiast of RTS and similar strategy games, this worked it's way into my top 3. The online scene is a little dead, but that doesnt take away from the fact that this is a fantastic game.

There are 3 things that set this apart from most other RTS's I have played:
1) The diplomacy is challenging as you have to build a relationship with a faction. Unlike other games with diplomacy mechanics, you really have to work at it.
2) The resources are scarce. It's not like Starcraft where you can just start mass-producing probes/drones/scvs to boost your economy intake. You need to manage resources and take advantage of the refining boosts you get through research.
3) The research tree. This is probably one of the most standard mechanic of any good RTS, and because of that I have seen some terrible tech trees. This game however has a balanced tech tree that allows for a little variability in expanding and is grouped into nice little sections for easier maintenance. I like this a LOT.

Aside from these three things, the game is also visually appealing, with an interesting (if a bit cliche) backstory and lots of available strategies for play. The only true downsides are the somewhat annoying and repetitive unit voices, the rather repetitive soundtrack, and the steep, steep learning curve.

In any case, I give this a 9/10. Excellent game to pick up if you dont mind spending an hour or 2 per match.
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