Take command of one race to join the struggle for supremacy in the galaxy. As the leader of your empire you are tasked with exploring the stars, colonizing new worlds, managing your empire and conquering whoever dares to oppose you.
User reviews:
Mostly Negative (326 reviews) - 22% of the 326 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date: Sep 12, 2014

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About This Game

Lords of the Black Sun is an epic, complex, dense, turn-based 4X PC strategy game, set in deep space.

Take command of one race to join the struggle for supremacy in the galaxy. As the leader of your empire you are tasked with exploring the stars, colonizing new worlds, managing your empire and conquering whoever dares to oppose you.

The galaxy is full of secrets and dangers: Discover ancient ruins and artifacts, repel or befriend pirates, promote a general to guide your fleets to victory. Concoct complex plots with your allies or use your intelligence services to uncover weak spots on that threatening empire whose leader has vowed to destroy you.

Make sure to keep your population happy or be prepared to face protests against your rule, or in a worst case scenario, rebel factions within your empire.

Only the mightiest rulers can prevail in the depths of space. Are you up to the task of becoming a Lord of the Black Sun?

Key features:

  • 8 major races each with their own ship designs, technologies, unique traits and unique abilities, meaning playing with each race is a different challenge and offers new ways to approach the game.
  • Big, living universe: In addition to the major powers, independent races and pirate clans also claim the galaxy as their residence; their existence can be an annoyance, or a blessing if you can take advantage of them.
  • Deep economical and political layer: War isn’t the only way to weaken your rivals. Diplomacy, inteligence and trade can be one of many powerful tools that, if used properly, can be very effective as well.
  • Tactical Turn based combat.
  • Create and customize your own ship designs.
  • Generals: These unique and powerful units evolve as they battle and if used well can be the difference between defeat and victory.
  • Randomly generated universe, tech tree and units: You will never play the same game twice.
  • Empire shattering: Unrest might lead rebels to start a civil war which in turn might lead to the creation of a new, independent empire that might grow to rival your own.
  • Plotting: Secretly finance a war against your rivals in order to weaken them or prepare a surprise joint war along with your allies in a bid to destroy that frighteningly fast growing empire.
  • Human-like AI that doesn’t cheat and plays by the same rules as human players, while presenting a constant challenge.
  • Play Multiplayer and Hotseat online via LAN or IP/internet.

System Requirements

    • OS: Windows XP SP3, Vista, 7, 8, 8.1
    • Processor: Dual Core 2.0 Ghz
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Graphics: 256 MB graphics card
    • DirectX: Version 9.0c
    • Storage: 1150 MB available space
    • Sound Card: Integrated
    • Additional Notes: There is a known issue with people using ATI cards on Vista so if you are one of those we recommend you skip the game until a fix is found
    • OS: Windows XP SP3, Vista, 7, 8, 8.1
    • Processor: Quad Core 2.0 Ghz
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: 512 MB graphics card
    • DirectX: Version 9.0c
    • Storage: 1150 MB available space
    • Sound Card: Integrated
Customer reviews
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Mostly Negative (326 reviews)
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251 reviews match the filters above ( Mostly Negative)
Most Helpful Reviews  Overall
213 of 217 people (98%) found this review helpful
4 people found this review funny
Not Recommended
5.3 hrs on record
Posted: July 22, 2015
Buyer Beware!

I bought the game during early access, participated in the forums and suggested ways to make the game more thematic. The Devs responded with a "yea...but" claiming money and etc as a limitation. What they managed to put together is not a finished product and is by all means an early access build. No polish, no depth or immersion and absolutely no support post release. In recent posts, the Devs cited financial difficulties and made empty promises for upcoming updates. There are NO updates for more than a year now and their website is dead...In the meantime, the game is plagued with the same bugs and CTDs that it had in earlier builds. You want to open trade routes? Crush. You want to play a long game? Crush on random turn and crush again later on.

Another Early Access scheme: promising the impossible and blaming bad finances for their complete and utter failure to deliver. An almost formulaic approach to risk-free-failure: promise A, receive payment for A, deliver B with promises of A but without the means of delivering A…Classic bait and switch tactics under the grey area of Early Access.
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350 of 385 people (91%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
Not Recommended
5.3 hrs on record
Posted: September 12, 2014
The game feels very simple and basic. There is nothing to this game that I wouldnt expect from any other x4 game, and this is still on the light side of 4x games. It does not get very in depth with any game mechanic. Combat is mediocre, Diplomacy is mediocre, research is very limited with a relatively small research tree compared to other more recent 4x games. All in all, the game is just bland and sub par. Honestly, it feels like playing a unity based game in a web browser. I would expect to find similar mechanics and gameplay from a free game site.

Its also not stable. When creating a game, picking certain map settings could cause a crash. First battle I lost, caused a crash. Within a period of 30 minutes just to check out the full release version, I had 3 crashes.

I really love the sci-fi space based 4x genre, and I wanted this game to be good because there are so few games in this genre that can hold a candle to what MoO2 was for its time. This game does not get close. I would not recommend this game to anyone, not even casual players.
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158 of 163 people (97%) found this review helpful
8 people found this review funny
Not Recommended
10.5 hrs on record
Posted: March 28, 2015
God I want to like this game.
MoO2 is in my top 2 games of all time.
The problem is that this game is ALPHA. Not Pre-Release, not Released, not Finished / Supported.

So many bugs, so many crashes, I can't load from a savegame, so every game is "rogue-like". Seriously! A Rogue-like 4x game.

The Devs have all but left this game. Even at 75% off, it's just not worth it. Plenty of 4x games on steam and GOG has MoO 1& 2.

Steam should be ashamed to have pulled this out of early release and the publisher should be strung up for asking $5 for this game, let alone $20+.

1/10 for potential but worth $2 at most.
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200 of 217 people (92%) found this review helpful
4 people found this review funny
Not Recommended
3.0 hrs on record
Pre-Release Review
Posted: October 26, 2014
Once upon a time, an intergalactic warlord colonized a planet with their species. This game is the result.

It's not often my lead-ins to my reviews are so short, and it's not often that I review a game prior to spending at least 24 hours in-game with it, but this game isn't one I can recommend, for various reasons.

First things first - "Lords of the Black Sun" is a space-based 4X game, where you attempt to conquer the universe, Cid Meyer's Civilization-style. You build installations on planets, create colony ships, build pre-defined military vessels, and can even create custom units. Units stack, and space battles take place in a sort of Final Fantasy Tactics cut-out battle scene.

All of this sounds like a strategy gamer's dream, so why do I sound so against it?

First, the interface is horrible, and I'm not merely talking about the presentation, though that's pretty awful. The UI isn't optimized for a player's experience; it's hard to see even a neophyte developer looking at the UI and thinking, 'the players are going to love this.' Most of the menuing takes more actions than is really necessary.

Second, the game itself feels utterly soulless. It feels like someone started by taking a look at Cid Meyer's Alpha Centauri, then proceeded to put it further into space, but instead of hiring a writer, gave it to someone's nephew. The result is an experience that doesn't capture the wonder of interstellar colonization, or galactic politics, but is rather an experience that it's hard to care about for even a single session.

Mechanically, the game is sound - as stated above, it's the sort of thing strategy gamers claim to love and want. The execution is so terrible, especially given the $30 asking price, which is entirely too much for what you're getting. Firaxis Games, these guys ain't.

  • Mechanicallly sound game
  • Great space visuals
  • Interesting fleet-to-fleet combat
  • Good custom unit creation system.

  • Uninspired, forgettable writing and scenario
  • Ugly UI that impedes the player
  • Forgettable music
  • Unstable game - the end of my expeirence came after the game just crashed for no apparent reason.
  • Way too expensive for what you're actually getting.

Verdict: Avoid it. The developers need to do some serious work on this game and lower the price for this game to be worth it. If they will do this, I will take a second look and re-evaluate my review.
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103 of 107 people (96%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
Not Recommended
2.9 hrs on record
Posted: January 12, 2015
Put simply, Lords of the Black Sun is a mechanically sound game (i.e. all the pieces, although not flashy, work and serve their purpose) that fails to blend together to create a harmonious whole. The game often feels disjointed, lacks real depth or innovation, and is mediocre even in what it tries to do differently from others (i.e. espionage, empire-wide management).

While it might be worth a few hours of gameplay, Lords of the Black Sun lacks the fine detail and substance that make players return to games over and over again. This will likely be played once by most and then gather proverbial dust in the Steam library, especially fans of the genre who have come to expect much more from 4X titles.

Lords of the Black Sun has some positives, but they don’t come close to outweighing the negatives. The limited graphics, lack of flavor (races, diplomacy, planets) and unfinished edges make for an experience I have no interest in repeating again. The current price tag is exorbitant for a game that could easily be mistaken for a title designed for a browser or mobile platform.

Definitely not the “epic-sized complex and dense 4X strategy game,” promised.

Check out my full review on eXplorminate: http://explorminate4x.com/2015/01/13/lords-of-the-black-sun-review/
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143 of 166 people (86%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
Not Recommended
0.9 hrs on record
Posted: September 12, 2014
If I could refund this game, I would. I watched a review of this game from several months ago, and it looked promising. More than promising actually, it looked like it could be an excellent game that combines many of the aspects that I love. Overall, it appears to be something like Sins of a Solar Empire crossed with Civilization crossed with Democracy. The issue was that it was not a finished game.

Jump forward to now, and it is on the front page of Steam, announcing that it is a finished game. FAR FROM IT. I should have looked more at the fine text, but the developer says that even though it is moving out of early access, it stills needs patching. This is evident from the start. The intro splash took quite some time to load, even on a fairly powerful computer and locked my screen to the program until it finished. Typos and grammatical errors are common, even on the first few small text boxes of the tutorial. Additionally, the textures are rediculously poor on higher zoom levels, even on max graphical settings. What sealed the deal for me though was the frequent crashing brought about by this game.

Again, though this game has promise, it is not yet ready. I feel as though I was tricked into buy an incomplete game. The saddest part of it is that if this game came out in a ready state, I might have loved it. But my initial play has only served to frusturate me.
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103 of 111 people (93%) found this review helpful
Not Recommended
7.3 hrs on record
Posted: September 14, 2014
As of 14 Sept 2014 -

This game is not terrible - just very very bland.

You will not find anything really new in here - all of it exists in other, better made games such as Distant Worlds or GalCiv2.

There are still some major bugs that have not been taken out - I can't even open the trade menu without a crash to desktop.

Ship design is weak - from the start, you get 4 hulls that go from tiny to small - with only no improvements available to increase what you can fit in them. The techs for ships don't provide any options - the missiles, beams and lasers are essentially the same. There are no fighters or bases.

Tactical fights are available but not terribly exciting - nor does it provide any depth as all weapons are in essence identical.

Many of the "management tools" are absent or in very basic form - you can't rearrange build queues, set up rally points, understand how much science, industry, or trade any particular action is going to generate. It's weird how you have to close an empire menu before opening the next one rather than switching between them.

The tech tree is pretty minimal - maybe 50-60 items in total. It gets boring in the 2nd part where you get solid lines of 3-4 consecutive "industry +1" or "research +1". It rarely opens up new abilities, just improves your starting ones.

Minor races have no interaction, except for pirates. You can send a trade ship there, tho with the game maxing out at 4 trade lines, it's not clear why you should bother.

What is working in this game is relatively fine. It just seems like they ran out of time to fine-tune and tweak the content in fun and interesting ways. Perhaps updates wil improve this solid, but it is currently an extremely bland X4 experience.

Verdict - unless you are scrapping the bottom of the barrel for x4 games, skip until a few updates.
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81 of 81 people (100%) found this review helpful
Not Recommended
7.7 hrs on record
Pre-Release Review
Posted: July 30, 2015
Under no circumstances should you buy this game. There are plenty of other 4x space games out there that are a) actually finished, and b) a hundred times better than this game.

It is a shame because during early access it did show some promise. But then one day the developer decided it was finished and it went from early access to released. "Abandoned" version would be a more accurate term for what we got. There have been no updates for months now, and it doesn't look like we'll get any - indeed at the time of writing this review the website for the company behind the game is no longer there.

It would be less of a waste to just burn your money rather than buy this game.
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123 of 155 people (79%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
128.8 hrs on record
Early Access Review
Posted: December 21, 2013
I have been playing this game for a while now, it has grown into such a great game. The developers really shine in their skill, communication, and direction. Right now it is like an uncut diamond. You can see the potential in the game, but it might not quite be there yet. If you are looking for a finished or mostly finished game, this is not yet for you. Since I bought the game, it has been drastically improved, both functionally and with new content.

For your benefit, here is my take on a few features the game offers

Sorry charlie, not yet. If you play the game, you will see why its not ready, the engine is not finished and the balance is a bit off.

AI, multiple opponents
The AI saw some improvements after the game launched to Beta. Now, they attack each other and expand more often. Additionally, every race and pirate uses stronger ship designs and upgrades their fleets as they research new tech. The early game is much more brutal, simply building 10 of the default attack design won't cut it it anymore. You'll find the most challenge in this game playing against Very Hard AI, having Total War selected, and selecting a race with a low likeability.

Standard researching. No real thoughts on this, its nothing to scream about, but its not bad either. To summarize.. Three tech trees, military, economy, science. Military has weapons, ship modules, and fleet and ground attack buffs. Economy has money and diplomacy buffs and a few economic buildings. Science allows you to colonize worse conditioned planets, terraform, buff science production, and has a few buildings.

Ship Design
Its a rudimentary system currently, but it has already seen some major improvements. Currently there are 4 hull sizes available from Scout up to Capital. Your different ship parts have weights and can only be placed in certain predetermined spots.

Ships and space combat
Use shipyard planets to build ships. Then conquer the galaxy. Space combat is psuedo turn based. Each player takes a turn with his whole army and attacker goes first. You can move a ship, then move another ship, then come back to your previous ship and attack with it. I like to move all my stuff then attack with it. There is automatic combat resolving, but like most 4X games you can do much better when you control combat manually.

Random Events, Minor Races, Pirates, Espionage, Diplomacy
There is a decent amount of variety but like any game if you play enough you will see it repeat a lot. Someday they are going to add in Race specific story line events, the race backgrounds (detailed in the manual) are quite good, but that story is not yet integrated with the game. The game offers espionage and diplomacy. These features are being worked on and have seen some improvements over the last few months.

Game graphics and performance
The graphics are beautiful. The camera angles are not great yet, but you can see that your able to zoom into fine detail and it still looks good. The developers recently said on the forums that their intention is to make combat more cinematic so it feels more exciting, you can see already that they will be able to pull that off

Game sound
Some of the sound effects are much louder than others, so occasionally you will jump at some sounds (like a missile exploding or when you deliver any of the speeches). The music is deliciously good in this game, I never noticed it until the Beta launch reset my settings to default.
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228 of 310 people (74%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
2.9 hrs on record
Early Access Review
Posted: December 7, 2013
Star Lords Alpha Build - Pre-release Review

Star Lords, by Arkavi Studios and Iceberg Interactive is a deep and complex turn based 4x sci-fy strategy game. This is about the only informations you get from the get-go once you boot the game for the first time. Once you start a new game, you will be asked to select from a group of 8 original races and customise the "game board".

Once the game begins, you'll immediately take control of your chosen race and you can start using your scout ship to explore your surroundings. You also get a home planet, which will be used as a main hub for initial development.

The game leaves a pretty good first impression, with very nice and clean graphical information. The UI is functional and simple, but can become a bit overwhelming for starters, but all in all everything is pretty intuitive. But, being this an alpha build, i must stress the importance of the creation of a structured tutorial, so players can learn and try the base mechanics before being sent into the wild.

Once the game starts building up pace, you will meet other civilizations, which you will need to either crush with military prowess or outsmart through diplomacy and espionage. Overall, the AI is pretty solid, even though other races can be tad temperamental towards your actions

The game map, even though presented in a very simplistic fashion, works very well and offers a ton of graphical variety. Planets look pretty good, and so does spacial debris and other celestial bodies, such as moons and stars.

The game still lacks a bit of clear indicative elements, such as an "it is now your turn" prompt, or some audio feedback on research completion but, as it is in alpha, hopefully these elements will be added at some point.

Veredict: There is room for a lot of improvement, specially in the fine details, but as this is just an alpha build, i will be eagerly expecting the finished product, and i am glad to be supporting it!
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Recently Posted
35.4 hrs
Posted: September 7
So having upgraded my PC recently I finally got to try out this game (as it refused to work on an older machine and despite my complaint there was nothing the developers could/would do about it). I wish I hadn't bothered. It's a low quality, slow paced and poor imitation of many decent 4X space games out there.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
0.7 hrs
Posted: August 31
DO NOT GET THIS GAME. Not even on sale. Not for anything. If it was free, it wouldn't even be worth the time it takes to download it.
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3.2 hrs
Posted: August 12
As I was one of the many people burned by this game's early access promises, I thought I should join the chorus of voices warning you away. This game is one of the main reasons I no longer participate in early access, and I believe it's also one of the main reasons that Steam now includes a disclaimer about how early access games are not guaranteed to ever be finished. I think it might be libelous if I were to assert that this game is a scam, but I can safely say that it has opened my eyes to how easily a developer could use early access to scam consumers.

- If Steam approves my refund request, then I can buy Artemis.

- The game is half-finished at best.
- There is absolutely no character to the game--it is painfully generic.
- Steam will probably not approve my refund request, because I waited too long to file it.

Bottom Line
If you like 4x games set in space, you'll love Galactic Civilizations III.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
15.4 hrs
Posted: July 27
Another game that is half done and left to be forgotten, which is a shame, it's a neat idea, and has some real potential behind it, but it isn't finished, and it never will be, the devs said and I quote "We have not forgotten about this game, but we are looking to put our resources into a new title" this was on a forum about how this was another game that was built up to be something it's not to take money and then drop it when they got enough.

Please, just stay away from this game. dont make my mistake of looking at this and thinking it looks cool. Listen to the reviews, they will say the same thing as I, but in a much better, more informative way.

literally, all this game is, is a half ♥♥♥♥♥ idea and criminal money schemes of creating unfinished games and dropping them when they make loads of money.
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2.4 hrs
Posted: July 26
All I have to say... Buggy as "beeeeeeeeeeep"

The building speed changes everytime you load a game, the diplomacy tab becomes unusuable randomly. It's just too much... theres no way to play this game.

Do not buy it unless the devs fix the problems.
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14.8 hrs
Pre-Release Review
Posted: July 5
Pretty disappointed. Feels unfinished and abandoned. I've heard this developer has a reputation for it.
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0.3 hrs
Posted: June 1
Unfinished rubbish.
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2.3 hrs
Posted: May 30
Aweful game, Waste of 15 bucks.
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Dix Neuf
8.4 hrs
Posted: May 22
I have tried this game a few times but never get beyong a point when it just closes and crashes. In a way it would be better if this just crashed straight away but annoyingly it crashes just after it has started to get interesting. Normally you have met at least one other civilisation, usually more, and you have colonised a number of planets and it just shuts down for no reason. I have not noticed any particular trigger it just randomly stops. That is a shame as might have been a good game but no game can be good if it does not work properly.
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氷海 Suijin
0.4 hrs
Pre-Release Review
Posted: May 13
This game had another name before they changed it, and it sounded good. They promised a lot for a space 4x strategy game.
Early access artwork (not gameplay footage) looked promising. They promised a lot of things. For 28€.

What you got from it.. A dead piece of *******. The game isn't complete, it's not even beta but they slapped the "finished" sticker on it and ran with money from god knows how many people. Steam did nothing, they don't offer refund for the obvious robbery. They won't even punish the developers. Heck, they're probably gonna slapstick their next work on the featured page again, only for us to get same cr*p again.

Stay away from this. Stay far away.

I want my 28€ back.
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