From the creators of AI War: Fleet Command comes an all-new grand strategy title with turn-based tactical combat, set in a deep simulation of an entire solar system and its billions of inhabitants. You are the last of a murdered race, determined to unify or destroy the 8 others.
User reviews: Mostly Positive (288 reviews) - 75% of the 288 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date: Apr 18, 2014

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Includes 3 items: The Last Federation, The Last Federation - Betrayed Hope, The Last Federation - The Lost Technologies

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November 11, 2015

The Last Federation - The Lost Technologies & TLF Collection Out Now

The Arcen Games team is happy to announce the launch of The Last Federation's second expansion: The Lost Technologies!

The new release brings new features and mechanics to TLF -- such as the new Ring World planet type, Champion enemies, a ton of new additions and modifications to racial techs, and more.

Along with the expansion, today sees the release of The Last Federation 3.0, a free update to the base game that brings three new events and three new alliance types.

Finally, we're celebrating the occasion of both base game and expansion releases with the debut of The Last Federation Collection -- a package that combines the standard release with both Betrayed Hope and The Lost Technologies expansions.

The new Collection, expansion, and all other TLF products currently carry launch week-style discounts until November 18th. All hail Hydral!

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October 30, 2015

TLF Version 2.021 (The New v3.0 Base Game Features -- Early!)

Version 2.021 is another cumulative update to the base game and the first expansion, and it also has the new "free v3.0 content" (3 new events and 3 new alliance types) in early.  Lots of good stuff in the release notes since the last main post about this, which was apparently version 2.008.


This is a standard update that you can download through the in-game updater, or if you have Steam it will automatically update it for you. To force Steam to download it faster, just restart Steam and it will do so.

Click here for the official forum discussion about this release.

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“For fans of space-faring simulation games, it's more or less a must.”
8/10 – Richard Nolan, Strategy Informer

“Arcen Games nailed it with this game.”
TotalBiscuit, The Cynical Brit

“A revolutionary twist on the 4X legends of yore.”
8/10 (Editor's Choice) – Jonathan Lester, Dealspwn

About This Game

From the creators of AI War: Fleet Command.

  • Turn-based tactical combat, with up to 5 factions competing at once.
  • Extremely deep simulation of an entire solar system and its billions of inhabitants. Even just watching everything unfold in Observer mode is entertaining, as nations rise and fall.
  • New-player-friendly ramp-up of complexity as you play, which you can disable if you're already a veteran.
  • Eight races each have very distinct personalities and attributes. Each one even has its own completely unique political system.
  • Difficulty levels split between the grand strategy and turn-based combat portions of the game, both ranging from quite casual to incredibly hardcore.
  • Save and reload your game with ease any time, or tough it out in ironman mode.
  • Composer Pablo Vega's best soundtrack to date, featuring 54 minutes of music and the vocal finale "Lay Down Your Arms."

    More Details

    Greetings, Hydral. I will be your computer for this "grand strategy campaign with turn-based tactical combat." I think that's code for "we're going to die."

    Our solar system is vast and complicated, and I sense you are a little dimwitted -- so I tell you what, let's start with the simple stuff. Like escaping with this flagship you just hijacked from a bunch of angry robots. That seems important.

    Please excuse my impertinence, but I believe you are the last of a murdered race, yes? My records note you Hydrals were the dictators of the solar system, so basically you had it coming. And by "it," I mean the moon that smacked into your homeworld. Hmm. So people really aren't going to like you until they get to know you. Well, only you can use the scattered remnants of advanced Hydral technology, so that's something.

    Look, I'm not going to tell you what to do. My understanding is that you're trying to form the solar system's first-and-last unified federation, and that's noble enough. But right now nobody wants that except you, and you've got 8 very diverse, very angry races to either unify or exterminate. So... good luck with that. I'll help how I can.

System Requirements

Mac OS X
SteamOS + Linux
    • OS: Windows XP SP2 or later
    • Processor: 2.2Ghz CPU
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Screen resolution at least 720px high, and 1024px wide.
    • Storage: 1 GB available space
    • OS: Mac OSX Intel CPU and "Leopard" 10.5 or later.
    • Processor: 2.2Ghz CPU
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Screen resolution at least 720px high, and 1024px wide.
    • Storage: 1 GB available space
    • OS: Ubuntu 10.10 or later, although other unsupported distros may work
    • Processor: 2.2Ghz CPU
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Screen resolution at least 720px high, and 1024px wide.
    • Storage: 1 GB available space
Helpful customer reviews
10 of 10 people (100%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
13.5 hrs on record
Posted: November 27, 2015
Note: This review is based on the non-DLC version of the game.

The Last Federation is a very odd game idea. 4X games and games which employ diplomacy aren't necessarily new. Nor are turn-based space shooters, but putting them together isn't something you see everyday. So naturally when I heard stories from TotalBiscuit on the Co-optional podcast about how he eventually got everyone to stop killing eachother by comitting genocide I was both amused and intrigued.

I then ignored it for about half a year. I needed something new to stream and since I don't have a particularly good internet connection I'm really limited in my choices. I decided to try a few different things out and Last Federation simply blew the competition out of the water.

In the Last Federation, you are the last Hydral in a solar system of races that hate your guts since your race was a bunch of asshats that decided to stop everyone else from getting into space. Karmic retribution in the form of rockets attached to your homeworld's moon turned out to be the last thing anyone did to interact with your people in a very permanent fashion. The only reason you're not dead is because you smuggled space faring technology to another race. That race plops you in prison and everyone goes about their business. A long time later they make it to space with a strong flagship. You break out of prison and take the flagship.

So thus this is your starting scenario. One race hates your guts and the rest are pretty neutral to you. Time to create a federation and stop everyone from killing eachother off. Kind of, but we'll get to that later.

This is a 4X game where you don't have a race. You are just a powerful diplomat running around the map. If it was just this, then it would have been an interesting, if ultimately shallow, experience. But Last Federation takes it further with an interesting turn based space combat game that takes the place of automated combat in other 4X games.

You can do everything here from attacking or aiding defense armadas in wars, to killing pirates, stealing techonology, space stations, assassinating leaders, or giving space faring tech to races not yet in space. During this mode you get the ability to move, damage with your weapons, or use special abilities that clear shots from around you and affect the battlefield. I specifically mention the shot clearing because enemies spam the battlefield with shots in practically every direction. It reminds me greatly of bullet hell games in this respect. Usually your best defense is to dodge out of the way. But sometimes you don't get that option and you get shot down or have to run.

With a few exceptions, the penalty for this is time. If you get shot down you're out of the action for a year and the races get left to their own for a while. Which will likely wreck any plans you have in some way. But doesn't end the game. It can be quite fun to just roll with the punches when you make mistakes and see what happens.

Despite all this praise, the game does have some drawbacks. Graphically the battles are very pretty, but the 4X mode leaves alot to be desired. It is essentially a flat picture with icons above the different planets that races own. There is no real ability to zoom in on these or get any more details about the worlds you are looking at save the occasional drawn art. While this is serviceable, it could definitely be better.

Next the game employs a staggered tutorial system that introduces concepts as you get further into the game. These tutorials are fine, but they are very information heavy and sometimes introduce concepts that you can't really utilize for a while. For example, the tutorial about research explained that you can research your own stuff at space stations you control! The ability to control a space station didn't pop up for me until much, much later. As a result I kind of forgot to make use of this until another playthrough. The tutorials get you where you need to be, but they could be cleaned up a bit.

Finally the game's win condition is maybe a bit too simple given the story. Basically you need to create a federation and then either kill off everyone not in the federation or absorb them into it. The only real failure conditions are the death of all Federation races or your own (This can happen in only a couple of situations. But yes there are a couple fights that can end you permanently.) The implication at the beginning is that you are trying to prevent genocide from occuring again with the Federation, only to turn around and do it yourself. Actually uniting all of the races without one of them dying is very, very difficult. There are different types of achievements for accomplishing this with limited sets of races. And this I'm fine with, but it seems like the game was designed for the solar system peace situation and less so for the others. It's not a big deal, but it does feel weird.

Beyond this the game has a great deal of statistics available to you which help decision making should you desire it. It can also come across as a bit intimidating, but I found it very worthwhile to get a handle on it all and use it to help my chances of success. Ultimately, I was really happy I learned it all and really ended up loving this game. If you enjoy Civ, Galatic Civ, the Endless series, or really any other games in this genre then give this a try. You'll probably really like it!

(Note: The DLC does introduce some backstory variations to help some of this make more sense. It also adds the ability to join and control a race so you get The Last Federation and a more traditional 4X experience at the same time. I have not tried them yet. But given the base game I probably will look into it and update this at some point.)
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5 of 5 people (100%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
113.5 hrs on record
Posted: October 8, 2015
How do I explain this? Bullet Hell meets Civilizations in Space?

You have 8 races, all with very identifiably anatomies ranging from small furry barn-owls to Metroid style Chozo-esque utopian robots to a planet of robots who act like Bender from Futurama to a warlike crab? people (what the hell is a Burlust). The main game mode has you trying to make a unified Federation to stop genocides like the one that happened to your awesome 4 headed dragon race. You can research technology on you rown or with other races to improve your relations with them, help build structures on planets that can either strengthen defenses, help production/livelihood, or just make a bunch of TV channels that help different races learn that they're not supposed to hate everyone.

All this is done through an interface that shows some incredible artwork of each planet and an entire solar system, and text-based explanations that are written as the actual dialogue of your snarky, spunky female ship AI, whom I may add is a fully fleshed-out character who will actively react to the events that occur in-game (she does NOT like when computer virus diseases pop up. Also she can be legitimately surprised if you can pull off things like getting the Peltians to successfully conquer a planet).

And in-combat you have a pretty well rounded bullet-hell style 2D shoot'emup complete with special abilities that can help kill enemies, keep you alive, and help circumvent the power management. Oh, did I forget to mention your ship acts like the old Star Wars TIE Fighter game where you divert finite power between weapons, shields, and engines?

The achievments in this game are a sort of guide to playing. Sure, you *could* just win by completely destroying all races except the ones who are easy to get into a Federation, but some require some finesse (and multiple saves to be honest) like trying to get a Federation of only the Acutians, Burlust, and Thoraxians for the "Look Upon Your Creation And Despair" achievement when the fastest way is to....make a Federation of Acutians-Burlust-Boarines, then find a way to get the Thoraxians IN and the Boarines OUT.

And yes, you will end up loving some races and hating others. The hiveminded bug people are going to grate at your nerves as you fly to their planet every few minutes to let them know the hard way they're not allowed to have a military just so you can be absolutely sure they don't end up ruining your attempts at a clean, genocide-free Federation where nobody has to play planet hop-scotch and move their entire remaining race.

To top things off the DLC adds new scenarios, one in which you actually have your own faction and one where the Federation exists and you need to keep it from being taken over by a 9th race of Touhou-style bullet-hell ship-piloting bacteria. You have to stop everyone from fighting each other to have a chance against these things and as the Burlust, Acutians, Thoraxians, and Boarines will have taught you well enough, fighting is something a lot of people like doing, no matter how much you hate it.

The game never seems to drag on too long like the inevitable Civ comparison in the long-running marathon games and never seems too short like Civ games that barely hit the iron age before victory (of course the game can be cut short by you dying but that can be said about a lot of games). You can use the standard galaxy or give everyone dice rolls and just hope the people you hate end up starting out on a planet that's ill-suited to them so they don't explode in population.

The soundtrack fits the game *perfectly*, with each track set to each scenario (trade ship raids, resistance fighter smuggling, invading, defending, etc.) all culminating in an ending song that makes it well worth the trouble those Thoraxians give you DID I MENTION I HATE THE THORAXIANS?

Last, I leave you with an excerpt from one of my games: I was attempting to get the achievement for having the three peaceful races in the Federation and nobody else. I focused ENTIRELY on building up their research, technology, defenses, etc. until their planets were fully equipped with everything they could ever want or need. I just ignored the other 5 races and let them go kill each other for a while. Until....until I saw a small little skull icon with a red outline across the other planets in the system. Turns out when you let one race conquer 4 planets they form a nigh-unkillable Fear Empire. This Thoraxian-created Fear Empire literally could NOT be defeated unless I conquered EVERY planet they owned and on their last planet I had to exterminate over a hundred BILLION bug-people. I had three races completely blot out the sun with their fully upgraded warships, I bombed every single building they ever made into dust, I poisoned their environment so much literally nothing could live on their planet, I undermined their economy so they could never even think of building a single spaceship, I poisoned the population until disease was so rampant babies were born on their deathbed and that only took out about *half* of their population. After just hitting the Orbital Bomb dispatch and setting the game to extreme-speed for about 20 minutes I FINALLY killed every single one of these 100+ billion bugs amd wiped them from the galaxy, which allowed me to finally establish my peaceful Federation of pacifists.
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3 of 3 people (100%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
14.5 hrs on record
Posted: January 30
After having greatly enjoyed Bionic Dues by this developer, I've decided to try out this title and was generally impressed.

The Last Federation has you play as an almost godly last survivor of an extinct alien race, who's now made it his mission to attempt to unify the remaining 8 alien races across the solar system (or unify as many as he can and destroy the rest!). To do this he has to gain credit and influence with each race by doing tasks for them. There is a lot of alien politics involved, and each race is quite different to the others, meaning the same approach doesn't work for all the races.

The game can be a bit hard to get into at first, as there's a lot of stuff suddenly being introduced at once. It can easily turn away some players, but I'd really recommend to keep playing, because eventually you get familiar with it all. The normal difficulty is pretty laid back and you have plenty of time to learn the ways and can afford to make mistakes.

The combat sections have you partake in a sort of bullet hell spaceship battle. They might seem pretty difficult at first, but again, they're actually a lot easier to grasp than they look. The battle is broken down into turns. You select where to go and which enemy to shoot at. The game then plays it out and you get to pick your next move. In addition to that, you can even change how much energy goes to your weapons, shields, and propulsion, as different situations require you to adjust it. For example, if you get swarmed and start to suffer damage - divert more energy to shields. If you need to take something out fast - divert it to the weapons. And so on.

Perhaps what I liked the most was how well-developed the lore and background on each alien race was. Each of them has their own political agenda and attitude to you and the other races. Some are diplomats and peacekeepers, whilst others are very warlike and territorial. I've had a lot of fun learning about each race and their likes and dislikes.

Music in the game is also fantastic. Each race has its own unique theme music, which was a nice touch. The visuals are pretty simple though and a lot of the gameplay, particularly the political side of things, is text-based, whilst the combat looks like a regular space shooter. So that aspect might not appeal to some people. But don't let that put you off if you enjoy a good strategy and political intrigue.

Just for those who are a bit unsure of how to start off and get going, here is some advice on methods that worked for me:

1) Start off by giving space-faring tech to 2-3 races you find most trustworthy. Normally Andor, Skyllaxians, and Peltians are pretty reliable, though it is up to you! This will get you plenty of starting Credit and Influence early on.

2) Start doing friendly tasks for those races and increase influence with them further. Cooperative Research is pretty good, as you can then gift this research to the other races and get free influence with them!

3) Expanding Unused Area and Colonizing/Mining Moons is great for getting some quick Credit.

4) Make sure to open up some Trade routes between the races you've allied with, so that they start to like each other as well (this is found in the Political page for each race, not in the Friendly Actions page).
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
20.0 hrs on record
Posted: February 4
Good game. Very unique concept although the bullet hell fights can get dull.
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4 of 7 people (57%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
20.7 hrs on record
Posted: January 6
I HIGHLY Recommend The Last Federation.

I try to do this with most of my reviews. I'll give you choice of checking out my Let's Play, or, further down, my written review. Something, for everybody! :)

Please be aware that I started this LP BLIND:

A quick word about Arcen Games in general.

I saw this game was being made while I was working on my Bionic Dues Let's Play. I was already a fan of the work Arcen Games does by this point and I followed the development. When I finally got my hands on The Last Federation I was super eager to jump in and just take over the galaxy. Something you'll learn over time, with Arcen, you never jump in and just take over anything. Arcen has a way of adding a million things to games that you have to absorb, learn, and take care of. I won't lie, it's a pretty daunting task. If you don't hunker down and commit to playing their games in full, you'll miss out on some fantastic games. My final word about Arcen is that they don't just make games and move on, they continue to work on them, add to them, and improve them. It may sound like I am drinking the Arcen Koolaid, but I feel GOOD developers don't get enough credit. My proof would be A.I. War: Fleet Command was made in 2009, even in 2014 they released yet another DLC/Update. :)

Now onto the actual review for the game!

I'm a sucker for Turn-based Strategy games, it's no secret. Having seen The Last Federation in development I was eager and excited to check it out. You are the last of your kind, the dominant species in the galaxy, the Hydral. Your race was a cruel one, the dictators of the galaxy. Unfortunately for them, they sort of got obliterated. You allowed yourself to be captured and bided your time. Finally, you decide it's time to break out and save the galaxy from itself. You steal a highly advanced prototype ship and, after your escape, you start to shape and mold the galaxy. The game isn't all about fighting, it's about strategizing, diplomacy, and alliances. There are 8 races of aliens in total, each with unique strengths, weakness, characteristics, and governments. Your ultimate goal is to create a federation, or alliance with all the races. Unfortunately, not everyone likes everyone else. To add fuel to the fire, the race you stole your ship and escaped from, don't like you very much. Make your Federation and all who refuse to join you must be eliminated. You have to convince your allies to take them down!

The turn-based combat is very well done. It's turn-based combat, but more like simultaneous turn-based combat. You choose where you wish to move, which weapon or "Special Attack/Operation" you want to use, and who you want to target. Many enemies have shields, or heavy armor, and you have to use the correct weapon for the job, changing as shields go down, or a swarm of small fighters are deployed. You have multiple targetting solutions as well. You can fire at anything in range, focus fire, fire at a direct point, or not shoot at all. Choosing the right weapon, in the right situation, while manuevering in the right place is the key to success. In addition you can choose to divert power more to your engines, guns, or shields to maximize their effect. Special Attacks or Operations play another big role in combat. Operations allow you deploy extra ships to fight for you. They range from tiny fighters, to lance weilding heavy ships. Your special attacks can be as simple as jettisoning garbage to blow up incoming projectiles, to hitting your afterburner to give you a few turns of extra movement and speed, to cloaking.

While you can't directly eliminate anyone, you still have all the power. The game's diplomacy system and how many different ways you can and NEED to influence is second to none. You can build up your relationship with a race by helping eliminate pirates, researching technology, assist in building a space station, building up their economy and tons of other ways. Additionally, you can cripple your enemies by more or less doing the reverse of those very things. Claiming a space station from an enemy and giving it to an ally to boost their production is one of my favorites. You can go beyond that, gaining voting proxies with their government, dueling a warlord to unseat him from rule, damaging the reputation with another race, even planting false evidence.

The Last Federation has a ton to do and it's quite challenging. Often times your best laid plans get waylaid and you must adapt and change how you wish to arrive at your ultimate goal. From beginning to end the game pulls you in, gives you more and more stuff to keep track of and will leave you scratching your head on more than one occasion. How do I get Aliens A to not want to murder Aliens B, but go to war with Aliens C? When you finally succeed you'll feel like you accomplished the impossible and you very well may have. There are plenty of different difficulty settings, including ironman mode and permadeath. If all of that hasn't convinced you, the comical writing and voice acting brings it all together.

The only thing I would have considered a con is a personal preference. One that, amazingly enough, was addressed in one of the DLCs of this game. I wanted to be able to be my own faction and take over the galaxy myself. Forget the federation of happy aliens living in harmony. I wanted to be in the Federation of ME! :D As I said, the DLC Betrayed Hope did exactly that and more!

Speaking of DLC, there are two out right now. Betrayed Hope and The Lost Technologies. Each DLC brings it's own share of updates, upgrades and unique things to the game. Not to mention their own game modes.

So, in summation: I highly recommend The Last Federation. It has fantastic writing, fun combat, amazing depth in how you can effect the galaxy, an outstanding, deep, and rich diplomacy system, and tons of choices on how you want to play. In addition, it is an Arcen Games product, so you know they are going to keep working on it, supporting it, and improving on it. YES! BUY! NOW!
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