Distant Worlds is a vast, pausable real-time 4X space strategy game. Experience the full depth and detail of turn-based strategy, but with the simplicity and ease of real-time, and on the scale of a massively-multiplayer online game.
User reviews:
Mostly Positive (42 reviews) - 71% of the 42 user reviews in the last 30 days are positive.
Mostly Positive (711 reviews) - 79% of the 711 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date: May 23, 2014

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May 28

Distant Worlds: Universe daily deal!

The critically acclaimed Distant Worlds: Universe gets a daily deal on Steam!

For 48 hours the game will get a -60% discount on Steam! Distant Worlds: Universe is a massive and epic 4x game, recently labelled by Rock, Paper, Shotgun as one the best space strategy game of all times. Few if any other games offer the same scale and level of detail of Distant Worlds: Universe. It's the ultimate space strategy experience. If you haven't played it yet, don't miss this opportunity!


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May 4

Slitherine lands on Bundle Stars! Distant Worlds: Universe at 50% off!

Amazing news!

We are happy to announce that Slitherine lands on Bundle Stars!

Starting from today a number of our games will be sold on the Bundle Stars store at a very special discount price!

If you are of a mind to save don’t miss this amazing offer. A whole Slitherine bundle comprising of three different tiers with so many titles at an incredibly cheap price. Three games for 1.99$, seven for 3.99$ and eight for 7.99$!


The details of the bundle are as follow:

Tier 1: $1.99

- Battle of the Bulge
- Time of Fury
- Pride of Nations

Tier 2: $3.99 (including Tier 1!)

- Vietnam ‘65
- Ravenmark
- Legions of Steel
- Close Combat Panthers in the Fog

Tier 3: $7.99 (Including Tier 1 and Tier 2!)

- Pandora First Contact

The Bundle offer is valid until May 14th!

But it’s not all, folks. Be sure not to miss these amazing discounts on some of our other titles:

Battle Academy – 75% off!
Battle Academy 2: Eastern Front – 75% off!
Battle of the Bulge – 33% off!
Buzz Aldrin’s Space Program Manager – 50% off!
Distant Worlds: Universe – 50% off!
Last Days of Old Earth – 15% off!
Order of Battle: Pacific – 40% off!
Vietnam ’65 – 50% off!
Warhammer 40,000: Armageddon – 35% off!

All the discounts will be valid for 72 hours.

By buying these titles on Bundle Stars you will receive Steam keys and you will need to activate the products on Steam.

What are you waiting for? Don’t miss this unique opportunity and visit the Bundle Stars store now!

1 comments Read more


“Distant Worlds: Universe is my favourite space strategy game. Not my favourite space strategy game released this week and not my favourite space strategy game released this year. It’s the definitive version of the best space strategy game I’ve ever played and I want to share the excitement with everyone”
Rock Paper Shotgun

“Distant Worlds: Universe is perhaps the finest 4x Space game in a generation, certainly since Galactic Civilizations 2. It's a challenging and complex game packed with features that allows you to choose just how you want to play it, while accommodating a wide variety of play-styles and strategies.”
9/10 – Strategy Informer

“Its enormous, complex and - above all - fun.”
4.5/5 – Digitally Downloaded

About This Game

The Universe is Yours!
Distant Worlds: Universe is the newest chapter of this critically acclaimed sci-fi series, adding incredible new features and an exciting new storyline.  Universe is also the ultimate collector’s edition, the first time all previous Distant Worlds releases have been included in one package, along with an updated manual and greatly expanded modding support.  

Distant Worlds is a vast, pausable real-time 4X space strategy game. Experience the full depth and detail of turn-based strategy, but with the simplicity and ease of real-time, and on the scale of a massively-multiplayer online game.  

Vast galaxies are made to order: up to 1400 star systems, with up to 50,000 planets, moons and asteroids. Galaxies are so deep, fun and immersive that you won’t want to finish the game.  Build, expand and improve your empire while playing through one of the storylines, with victory conditions or in an open-ended sandbox mode.

Each galaxy is packed with life and activity. Encounter other empires, independent alien colonies, traders, pirates and space monsters. Explore star systems, asteroid fields, gas clouds, supernovae, galactic storms and black holes. Discover evidence of civilizations long since past, uncovering secrets about the galaxy's troubled history...

Best of all, you can play the game your way: enjoy a quick, intense game in a crowded sector of space or take your time in an epic game spread across a vast galaxy! 

Distant Worlds: Universe contains all of the following:


  • Truly Epic-Scale Galaxies: play in galaxies with up to 1400 star systems and 50,000 planets, moons and asteroids. Vast nebula clouds spiral out from the galactic core, shaping the distribution of star clusters in the galaxy
  • Private Enterprise: the private citizens of your empire automatically take care of mundane tasks like mining resources, transporting cargo, migration between colonies, tourism and much more. This frees you from micro-management and instead allows you to focus on a macro-scale
  • Diplomacy: interact with other empires, discussing treaties, making trade offers or just giving them a piece of your mind. Talk to pirate factions, tapping into their underground information, or paying them to do your dirty work for you...
  • Choose your Playstyle: Start with a single planet and sub-light ships, or as an established space-faring civilization with warp drives.  Play as a Standard empire or as a Pirate faction, with many adjustable victory conditions and gameplay choices depending on your actions.
  • Intelligent Automation: automate the various tasks in your empire, so that you can focus on the areas that you enjoy most. Or have your advisors make suggestions in different areas like colonization, defence or diplomacy – helping you learn the best tactics and strategies
  • Explore: explore the vast galaxy, discovering valuable resources, potential colonies for your empire and making contact with other empires. Uncover secrets that lift the veil on the galaxy’s mysterious past...
  • Colonize: send out colony ships to found new worlds for your empire. Develop your new colonies by keeping them well-supplied with a steady stream of valuable resources
  • Defend: patrol the outlying areas of your empire to protect from raiding pirates or dangerous space monsters. Construct defensive bases at your colonies. Build up your fleets to defend against enemy empires. Recruit troops to invade enemy colonies and conquer the galaxy!
  • Espionage: covertly seek out information about other empires, or even disrupt their progress with acts of sabotage
  • Research: develop new technologies for use in building your own unique ships and star bases
  • Characters:  including Leaders, Admirals, Generals, Ambassadors, Governors, Agents and Scientists, all with defined skills and traits and the opportunity to advance and improve
  • Design and Build: A very flexible system allows you to design and build the ships and star bases in your empire. Construct mighty military ships ranging from escorts to carriers and dreadnoughts at your space ports, or build mining stations, research installations or secret monitoring facilities at remote locations throughout the galaxy
  • Built-in Game Editor: fine-tune your own galaxy, adding or removing star systems, planets, asteroid fields, ships, star bases, space monsters or anything else. Modify the attributes of any empire in your game
  • Extensive Help: exhaustive, built-in, context-sensitive help is always only a single key-press away. Press F1 at any time for a detailed explanation of the current game screen, your currently selected item, etc
  • Tutorials: in-game tutorials familiarize you with all of the game elements and tools

New to Universe!

  • The entire Distant Worlds series in one package! Universe includes the Original Distant Worlds, Return of the Shakturi, Legends, Shadows and the new Universe expansion!
  • Comprehensive Modding and Customization Support: Allows adding/removing/changing most items: resources (including new colony-manufactured resources), ship components, planetary facilities and wonders, fighter designs, alien races and race families, diplomatic dialog, empire policy, custom characters, ship and base design templates, governments, plagues, research tech trees and more
    • Can customize most of the images used in the game: ships and bases, fighters, alien races, planetary facilities and wonders, characters, troops, components, resources, ancient ruins, planets, stars, asteroids, animated in-game effects and more
    • Use a previously saved and editor-customized game as a map for a new game (instead of generating a new galaxy)
    • Powerful new event system accessible from a considerably-upgraded Game Editor. Set up your own storyline in a custom map with triggered events and custom victory conditions
    • Add story triggers on specific in-game objects or events, executing one or more actions on other in-game objects (either immediately or delayed)
    • Can replace most of the user interface icons and sound effects
    • Add your own custom help files to the in-game Galactopedia
    • Switch between different customization sets with a couple of mouse clicks from the main game menu
    • Comprehensive 99-page Modding Guide that outlines how to make Mods and explains all of the settings in detail
  • A new official storyline built using the new modding capabilities, covering the first war between the Freedom Alliance and the Shaktur Axis, in which you have access to the tech required to build your own planet destroyers, establish the Ancient Guardians and research and deploy the Xaraktor virus.


System Requirements

    • OS: Windows XP SP3, Vista, Windows 7, 8, 10
    • Processor: Pentium 4 @1.5 GHz
    • Memory: 1 GB RAM
    • Graphics: minimum 1024 x 768 resolution, 32 bit
    • DirectX: Version 9.0c
    • Storage: 1 GB available space
    • Sound Card: DirectX 9 compatible
    • Additional Notes: Requires Windows Media Player, Internet Explorer
    • OS: Windows Vista, Windows 7, 8 (64-bit), 10
    • Processor: Dual Core CPU @ 2.0 GHz
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: minimum 1024 x 768 resolution, 32 bit
    • DirectX: Version 9.0c
    • Storage: 1 GB available space
    • Sound Card: DirectX 9 compatible
    • Additional Notes: Requires Windows Media Player, Internet Explorer
Customer reviews
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Mostly Positive (42 reviews)
Mostly Positive (711 reviews)
Recently Posted
( 38.9 hrs on record )
Posted: June 25
Stardate 164, the 18th day of the 8th month.

The war with the Tamarians to our Northeast has not progressed to the expectations of the council. What was intended to be a short colonial war to annex the outer-colonies of the Tamarians has turned into a dragging war of attrition. After the unfortunate Invasion of Orto and the loss of the Alliance's Elite Guard, the empire lacks the reserves to assault the colonial militias of our enemy. However, the war progresses in our favor. Our superior naval forces continue to capture and scuttle the mining stations of our enemy, bleeding their navy dry as we hit it hard in our border sorties.

Stardate 165, the 2nd day of the 2nd month.

Hell is upon us. What started as a simple petty war of imperialism between two of the lesser empires has sent shockwaves throughout the galaxy. The delicate system of overlapping and contradicting guarentees and alliances has burst and thrown the galaxy into a haelstrom of practically free-for-all war. Most empires are at war with at least four others, and many at war with eight or greater. The Ferengi Alliance sits in a tenuous position. With the supreme navy of the galaxy, direct attacks on our systems seem unlikely, however, a deeper threat looms. The empire relies on mining stations in the nebulous border-zones of the empire, which draw the ire and greed of neighbors who wish to see those resources their own. The people are already worn out from the long colonial war with the Tamarians to the north-east, and though that front has been settled, this promises to be a war on a far grander, and more destructive scale. Only the alliance with our strong trading partner to the Southeast, the Federation has held strong. This is to be, I believe, our greatest crutch in this war. As long as the trade routes between us are protected against the vast swaths of enemies, our two nations can continue to hold fast. However, at this very moment, over half a dozen of our outlying mining stations are under attack, and the pirates grow worrisomely powerful, half the galaxy feeding into them for supplies and mercenary services. Trade cut as it has been, and war on several fronts, I look to the hands of fate to decide the future of the Alliance. Hell is upon us.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
( 24.4 hrs on record )
Posted: June 25
The most fun I've had with a 4x in quite awhile :D
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Fluffy Bunny
( 68.7 hrs on record )
Posted: June 18
One of the games that i gave 30 euro for it and after that regreted for that decision.... Better to have burned that money and throw the ash out of the window. That much this game sucks...
Helpful? Yes No Funny
( 86.4 hrs on record )
Posted: June 17
Once you get into the game it is great, take it off easy and get challanged. Dont expect in depth space fighting as it is mostly an overview when you are invading or defending but i love watching my empire grow to be THE power in the galaxy
Helpful? Yes No Funny
( 105.1 hrs on record )
Posted: June 17
While there are many games now set in space this is really the only one that makes me actually feel like I am exploring a universe. It is simply the best 4X I've ever played and its depth puts most other games to shame. Start in a tiny corner of a 1400 star universe, get humiliated by space pirates, slowly map out your little corner of space, secure a few strategic resources and planets, build up your technology slowly, design your ideal fleet in minute detail,make first contact with aliens, send some of your secret agents to steal their secrets and finally you are ready to start building a real space empire.

One thing, you should not play the game on fully automated mode until you know what is going on with it. This is the best way to confuse yourself. Automated mode is great when you want to cut down on micromanagement late in the game, it is not a substitute for actually learning how to play. Best way to learn how to play is to start in a pre-warp universe and just take it slow. Put everything on manual at first with the computer making suggestions of what to do. At the beginning you will only have one planet and a few ships to worry about, it is not too overwhelming. Pay off the pirates when they come as your military is probably not strong enough to fight them, you'll get revenge later. Set your tax rate as low as possible to make your planet grow faster, occasionally raising it back when you need money.

Helpful? Yes No Funny
Grim Madder
( 38.4 hrs on record )
Posted: June 14
I have played so many hours of this (500+) This is the best 4X Space game made. Better than MOO 1 and 2. (Oh no he didn't!).

Play everything on manual. You will learn how the game works and you will get caught up in the story that is unfolding. If that sounds daunting watch Larry Monte's vids on youtube. This is a campaign that can stretch for weeks.

All I can say is you either get into this game or you don't. If you do, it will just capture you and wrap you up in little spacey bits of goodness.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
( 97.6 hrs on record )
Posted: June 13
I like it, I play it.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
( 72.3 hrs on record )
Posted: June 12
First of all if you want to learn the game, here is a good YOutube Video tutorial from Dastactic

I usually can never stick to any strategy games too much for one reason or the other, but Distant Worlds has been an exception. This is not just a space strategy game. Its amore of a simulation of an Empire, or writing a story of your race from begining of one planet, building your very first space station to finally spreading out to the stars. Every game i have played, i have had a unique experience, each game telling a different story. From freighters trasporting goods from one part of your empire to another, to passanger ships transporting migrants to other colonies within your empire, to tourists visiting that tourist resort you created near a black hole.

There is soo many things you can do in this game. It is only normal the UI would be a wee bit complicated. But once you learn the way the UI works, things get a lot easier. If you are willing to overlook the Graphics, and take the time to learn the game. I assure this game will take away your life assuming you are a space scifi fan like i am.


Starting from Galaxy map, every part of the galaxy si accessable, you can mvoe your ships to any part of the galaxy, build a star base anywhere, as opposed to having access to only the systems and not the area between it. This essentially increases the scale of the Universe immensly as compared to Stellaris if your playing in 1000 star system.

There are nearly 20 different types of resources, each of these resources needs to be mined by your minign stations, transported by freighters over to your space ports. From where these resources will be used to build ships and other thigns necessary. The transportation is handled by the private sector, so you do not need to worry about that. Each ship component uses certian types of resources, So an entire spaceship with hyper drives, proximity sensors, maxos blasters will use a whole host of resources which your spaceports will need an active stock of in its Cargohold. SO there is no automatic teleporatation of resources, its realistic.

Ships and starbases can be custom designed, if you want to leave the designing aspect to the AI, that can be done as well. But it will be a lot more usefull to design your own ships for specefic needs. You could fit exploration ships with long range sensors and place them on the edges of enemy systems, giving active information of ship movements with a sector. IF you simply want a starbase to give your colonies better access to entertainment and medicial facilities to improve their happiness and popuilation growth, that can be done as well...


IF you decide to build on giant fleet, for your entire empire, you are bound to ragequit. You will be attacked by pirates in different star systems, some times by giant fleets, sometimes by small 1 or 2 ships, some times by space bugs. The only way to adequatly defend your self is too create escorts and automate them to protect your trade lanes, build small strike fleets to defend vulnarable sectors and few bigger fleets for large engagements. Monitering stations are extremely necessary to find out enemy fleet movements and for better defence co-ordination, otherwise this will become a game of whack-a-mole with pirates constantly harassing you.

Ground combat is more or less simple, you have defensive troops which give massive defensive bonus, you have normal troops used for both attack and defence and then you have armoured regiments for purely offensive use, and then finally you ahve special forces to take out defensive emplacements like shields. There is arduamantry skill system for troops , as more they fight better they will get in combat effectiveness...


Exploration is a rather huge aspect of the game, there are plenty of goodies out there to get from death star space weapons, to abaondned ships, to an ancient starship graveyards where you can end your contructors to repair the ships to special anomalies on planets where you can get tech, credits or activate something sinister which you will later regret.
PIrate bases are surprisingly well hidden, so you will rarely stumble upon them. Its easier to use the charecters to steal their territory map or operations map.


PIrates are probably one of the best(As well as the most annoying) features in the game. There are bascially 3 different types.

Smugglers - they basically use indipendent feighters to transport goods into your empire, earning oney from the private sector. you can infact ask smuggling pirates to get the goods that your empire does not have. They are less aggressive, but they will have a few military ships

Mercenries - They basically do what you pay them to do, they will attack other pirate bases, planets, starbases if you pay them enough. Other empires will also use this feature against you. SO if youare getting harassed by a pirate merc faction. Most likely your rival is funding them.

Raiders - They basically raid, burn ♥♥♥♥ and pillage. YOU can pay them off to keep them away from you or you can wipe them out. BUt if you pay them off for too long, by mid game Raiders and merc factions can get extremely powerfull. Even far more powerfull than other Empires.


Trade in the game is a lot more realistic. Private sector will often go to nearby empires and purchase goods your empire might not have. They will even purchase goods from pirate bases assuming you pay them off to not be hostile with you.
The amount of trade done will positivly effect your relationship with another empire. So you might have in MId to late game freighers from several empires trading and traporting goods withint your empire.


AI is pretty good compared to other games, it certianly is not a walk over if you change all the setting to extreme. There is also an very good AI mod from icemania in Matrix forums which makes the AI a lot better. The AI still surprises many Vtearan players.

The End game threat is possible one of the hardest in any stratgy game history. Wars against the Shakturi are allways EPIC in scale. The size and scale of battle IMHO is unmatched by any other game until now. If you are not carefull, they will wipe out everyone and everything literally.

Final Comments

This game is dream come true for any space stratgy fan, Galaxy is literally alive from pirate attacks, boarding action , freighters, migrants , tourists , smugglers , space creatures. A pretty decent in game back story, with forgotten ships, starship graveyards , starbases and the massive scale of a 1400 star map with 50,000 odd planets and moons give the game an immense sense of scale and mystery.

I easily Rate this a solid 9/10
Helpful? Yes No Funny
( 28.2 hrs on record )
Posted: June 11
This: |
This is the learning "curve".
You see, it's not a "curve", it's a 90 degree straight line...
Helpful? Yes No Funny
( 3.1 hrs on record )
Posted: June 11
I was excited by the game, and even more excited by the comments from players, saying that it's somewhat too complex and not very pretty: I thought that it would be a great challenge for an experienced player like myself.
Well, it was a mistake. This game is probably very deep and complex, but I also think that it requires 50 hours just to understand the basics, and I'm not sure it's worth it. I've done every tutorials, and started the first easy game mode, and spent the first 2 hours watching the game being automated, and not understanding how to perform even a few very basic tasks like attacking a target or sending a spy. i've asked a refund.
To conclude : it's probably a well crafted game, but too complex, even for veterans.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Most Helpful Reviews  In the past 30 days
20 of 22 people (91%) found this review helpful
357.4 hrs on record
Posted: May 29
Distant Worlds: Universe (DWU) is one of those games not everyone will enjoy for the relative complexity and depth of its mechanics and gameplay, made more difficult to comprehend with a strange looking, but highly functional, UI.

If you have been looking for a game where you will be:

1. MANAGING a massive empire spanning hundreds of stars, and thousands of planets;
2. COMMANDING thousands of fleets, billions of soldiers, and trillions of citizens;
3. FIGHTING against dozens of different interstellar empires, invading hundreds of different pre-FTL empires, and defending yourself against (similar to) Mass Effect's Reapers;
4. CONTROLLING your ship and station constructions down to what components will they be made from, where they will be built from, whilst managing dozens of different materials which will be used to create these components and constructs;

5. All the above supported by a relatively deep research tree (much, much more with mods), with dozens of different weapons, shields, armor, FTL drives, and other several types of components this game has;
6. All this played using a clunky, but very informative, UI;
7. With a very 2.5D and pixelated ship/station designs (which can simply be upgraded with an HD mod);


Just look at my playtime and you can probably assume that I'm having a lot of fun with this game. That said, mods are highly recommend after your first or second playthrough because they add so much more and they extend your gameplay much, much longer. These mods add things such as:
1. Dozens of new components
2. Dozens of new races
3. Dozens of new ship designs
4. Dozens of new technologies to research
5. Dozens of new materials to harvest and manage
6. Smarter AI, much more difficult than the vanilla AI

So yeah. If you liked all the above and you're fine learning using Youtube tutorials, reading, scrolling through dozens of websites just to learn how to play the game enough for you to figure out other things by yourself, then you should buy this game.

You shouldn't buy this game if you don't have a lot of time to learn the mechanics, or you have no patience to visit dozens of websites just to figure something out, or you don't like looking at forums to figure out some hidden, un-explained mechanics, or you don't like 2D sprites, or you hate clunky UI and have no wish to penetrate it to feel the gameplay behind it.

Decide for yourself :D

P.S. If you're interested in buying this game, but you're afraid that you might not find a decent tutorial on the internet, then I highly recommend the very tutorial which taught me to play this game from 100% automation (AKA watching the game play itself) to 0% automation (AKA I'm the Emperor and I rule almost everything I am able to control). This excellent tutorial made me love this game a hundredfold, and I have to thank the one who wrote it.

So here it is: https://www.reddit.com/r/DistantWorlds/comments/3678ah/the_masochists_guide_to_dominating_the_galaxy/
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191 of 326 people (59%) found this review helpful
23 people found this review funny
Not Recommended
176.0 hrs on record
Posted: May 27

Possibly the most overpriced space RTS on steam. Hardly a 4X, kinda worse than Endless Space, not anywhere near the MoO2/MoO3 games.

After 170h+ of gameplay I believe I am capable of giving an honest accounting of this game.

And it is quite a mess. But before I explain why, let us clear basics first.

Sound: 4/10
- Terrible music. We surely need more dance/rock/techno for a strategic game, where we need to pause, think and plan in advance.
- All those woooshes and beeps. Intefrace has limited amount of sounds, reuses the same alert sounds for different events which can be confusing as hell.
- Ship sounds are sub-par. Apparently cheap sounds used from over internet.
- No vocalizes to speak of. Never.
- Sounds lags and distorts many times.
- Ambient noise from starports and while constructing ships. Imagine looking at your homeworld and having to listen to pneumatic drill for a 15 minutes. FFS, I am pretty sure they would use plasma cutters/welders for construction in space!

+ Minimalistic graphics, exactly what you need for a large scale strategy.
+ You can mod in your own ships (hello, S.P.A.Z. carriers!)
- Very limited planet graphics. Ugly. There seem to be mod that fixes that
- Game visibly suffers in default settings from too many ships on the map. This problem (solution described at the end) is caused by fighters, each and every one of them processed the same way as other ships. Meaning a fleet of 10 carriers with 100 fighters each will take as much processing power as 1000 destroyers.
- The above mentioned issue is so pronounced, it makes large-scale battles virtually impossible to watch.
- Possibly the worst interface of 4X games released in the last decade.
- - - Why do I need to have 3 buttons doing the same, but have no list of key shortcuts anywhere inside the game? Why cannot I rebind them in menus?
- - - Why not give me resolution setting, so I could actually choose, how about that?
- - - Why the few pixel gaps between buttons and status window, so that I could hit that space and loose selection of my choosen ship/planet?
- - - Why cram the logs above, why not let me rewind it without entering message history?
- - - Why no real message settings, so I could block the annoying popup windows?
- - - Why no central control screen for AI settings with all those automation sliders so that I could actually FUKKEN DECIDE ON THE POLICY FUKKEN AUTOMATED AI IS EXECUTING?!?!?
- - - Agent succes/failure displays american jet fighter pilot picture, SERIOUSLY?!
- - - No mass 'Retire' button for a fleet. Have to search for every ship in ship browser, luckily we can sort by fleet name.
- - - Default character/ship sorting is by some ID that is not visible. You can't restore it if you click any other header.

Game was supposed to be supper modable. This is a lie - you can only fine tune several aspects of it, graphics, sound, some research/race setting.
You cannot touch the core gameplay, for example galaxy generation method, to create different galaxies. You cannnot mod ship settings, so to create a civilian ship that never runs from combat (very lore-friendly, according to some racial descriptions).
There is some huge mod out there that adds dozens of races and techs but seeing the game as cripled as it is today I really wasn't feeling like trying it.

Gameplay: 3/10
I will break this down in few different categories. It is a must, because the game suffers from certain choices that along with huge stability issues make this title 25€ at the very best, certainly not 50€.
Let me write this here only to repeat later with a solution to this, GAME CRASHES OFTEN, WIPING OUT YOUR PROGRESS!

1. eXplore
Regardless of what positive reviews of this title said, single player kinda sucks.
So. Even if you decide to start a pre-warp empire in a brand new galaxy, you cannot research warp technology. Instead you are given an ability to do so, after you are visited few times from a civilisations already having it (!). These are independent (!) planets, not an empires(!) possesing advanced technology(!). You cannot interact with them in any other way than colonizing/invading.
Why is such a thing in the game? Because you require resources to build stuff and you cannot get them in the beginning, therefore independent trading vessels will conveniently supply you with them.
I shook my head in disbelief for this solution.
Now, once you do start building things you will soon realize that:
- construction and colony ships can only be build on planets, not shipyards.
- the planet building capacities cannot be improved except with a single wonder.
- this was deliberate solution to forcibly slow down player progress.

So you build a couple of recon vessels. Little do you know that you cannot group them in a fleet (nope!). They have to go alone. They will be attacked by every single pirate/space monster they meet.
So perhaps you want to arm your recon vessels so they could defend themselves? Sure, but if you do, every time such a vessel enters a system controlled by other race, your diplomatic relations will deteriorate due to "military ships violating territory". Unbelivable.
The same goes for civilian ships that you cannot control. Arm your passenger transport agains pirates only to see it blown to pieces by a race more powerfull than yours as a "lesson" with few million passengers on board! Oh and by the way if the race has greater military rating than you they will blow up every single of your civilian ship armed with a weapon they see as a "military ship violating territory" even if you transport ultra rare spice to their homeworld! FFS whos idea was that??

Possibly the worst aspect of the game is how you expand your territory and build up your empire.
To begin with, you have no control of your civilian fleet transporting goods from one place to the other. You can and should manually design them, as vanila designs are just too slow/too weak/have too little cargo.
But wait, worse things are to come. In order to balance against multiplayer gameplay, the game features very expensive colonisation research (more about "research" later) and you can only build your colony ships planet side, which takes like forever. No, you cannot build industrial buildings on the planet to construct things faster, there is only one, singular wonder that allows you to do that.
There is more. Some genius decided to add a certain parameter, "quality" to the planet. This defines how big population can get on a planet and below certain population levels planet brings no income, only expenses.
Doesn't sound bad yet? Let me explain: you cannot terraform planet into higher quality. Terraform facility only serves to repair battle damage to the maximum quality planet had, does not increase it over time. But why would you want low quality planet in the first place?
Imagine there is legendary building (one of a kind) or an ultra rare resource (the only source in the galaxy) on a planet with quality 2%.
This planet population won't go above 20M and will always generate -3,6k loss.
And what if this is the only habitable planet in a 2 sector radius and in a mineral rich system of 15 planets and 30 moons in total?

More bad things. Due to some weird bugs construction ships will forget the quequed tasks (I think that happens when they are attacked, pretty sure it does when they are destroyed). Fancy ordering of building mining stations few times in the above sectors of 15 planets and 30 moons?

Continued in comment section.
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9 of 9 people (100%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
11.3 hrs on record
Posted: May 30
The learning curve on this game makes EVE cry. The amount of micromanaging is mind-boggling.

Thankfully, you can automate about 99% of it! Just sit there and watch the game play for you!

I love 4x games. RTS 4x games are a bit touch and go. This one is just crazy. It's not something you're going to learn to play the first time you play. Hell, I have almost 10 hours in it so far and I still don't understand most of it. The UI isn't that easy ot use, some of the commands (or lack thereof) don't make sense, and for the life of me I can't figure out how to attack an Empire's home planet, even though I have troops and bombard weapons.

Overall I'd give this game a 7/10, because I can see what it can do. I've watched vids on Youtube of people who know what they're doing, and the game seems deep and fun. I'm just not there yet. I'm at the base of Mount Everest looking up. In a speedo. And High Heels.
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8 of 8 people (100%) found this review helpful
5 people found this review funny
46.2 hrs on record
Posted: May 29
This game is massive and hard to get into, but you can automate most everything and just push fleets around and that is fun. After awhile I felt like I was barely scratching the surface of this game but am too intimated to crack it open and really learn how it fits together.

To really enjoy this game to its potential you need to be 7 or more smart, but I am only 5 smart.
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9 of 11 people (82%) found this review helpful
51.3 hrs on record
Posted: May 30
As I write this the game is on sale.
Don't let me Steam time fool you. I got this game from Matrix several years ago and between the orginal game and expansions must have poured 2000 hours in so far.
With the currently promising but underwhelming Stellaris and the kiddies game that seems to be Master of Orian remake this remains the number one 4X game.

For me it's so important to have some element of tactical control over the battles. I micro manage the game and set my fellt order (engagement range, target priorities etc) before hand and do a little fiddling during large battles.
Stellaris like GalCiv is just "Watch the battle movie in friustration as the Ai does things with your fleet only an idiot would do!"
This is the 4X game of the last 10 years. Stellaris might overtake it after a few patches and DLC (after all this game was no where near as good on release as it is now) but for now, after dabhling in Stellaris and finding it rather weak and simplistic - essp in combat - Distant Worlds wins hands down
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6 of 6 people (100%) found this review helpful
105.1 hrs on record
Posted: June 17
While there are many games now set in space this is really the only one that makes me actually feel like I am exploring a universe. It is simply the best 4X I've ever played and its depth puts most other games to shame. Start in a tiny corner of a 1400 star universe, get humiliated by space pirates, slowly map out your little corner of space, secure a few strategic resources and planets, build up your technology slowly, design your ideal fleet in minute detail,make first contact with aliens, send some of your secret agents to steal their secrets and finally you are ready to start building a real space empire.

One thing, you should not play the game on fully automated mode until you know what is going on with it. This is the best way to confuse yourself. Automated mode is great when you want to cut down on micromanagement late in the game, it is not a substitute for actually learning how to play. Best way to learn how to play is to start in a pre-warp universe and just take it slow. Put everything on manual at first with the computer making suggestions of what to do. At the beginning you will only have one planet and a few ships to worry about, it is not too overwhelming. Pay off the pirates when they come as your military is probably not strong enough to fight them, you'll get revenge later. Set your tax rate as low as possible to make your planet grow faster, occasionally raising it back when you need money.

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5 of 5 people (100%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
180.1 hrs on record
Posted: May 30
Extremely complex amazing game, The Dwarf Fortress and Rimworld of the 4x Genre, there is a steep learing curve, but the game isn't too hard to pick up. Mods make the game better, and full conversions to other sci-fi universes by mod creators ensure infinite replayability. If you have played Stellaris, or licked the MOO games and see this on sale or you have $60s kicking, pick it up and give it a try, if its too daunting you can always refund it.
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6 of 8 people (75%) found this review helpful
47.1 hrs on record
Posted: May 29
It's a really great game! More complex than stellaris, better in every way but unfortunately no multiplayer so stellaris it is :(
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6 of 10 people (60%) found this review helpful
4 people found this review funny
32.2 hrs on record
Posted: May 28
Not many 4x's can come close to DW.
By far the most complicated, yet entertaining game.
Want to customize ships? has it.
Want to be like putin and rain havok on the galaxy, has it.
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2 of 3 people (67%) found this review helpful
306.4 hrs on record
Posted: May 29
Lots of hidden depth to this game. If its on sale then its a very safe choice.
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