Explore a vast galaxy full of wonder! Paradox Development Studio, makers of the Crusader Kings and Europa Universalis series presents Stellaris, an evolution of the grand strategy genre with space exploration at its core.
User reviews:
Recent:
Very Positive (730 reviews) - 85% of the 730 user reviews in the last 30 days are positive.
Overall:
Very Positive (11,184 reviews) - 87% of the 11,184 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date: May 9, 2016

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Recent updates View all (69)

January 19

Species Rights


Hello everyone and welcome to another Stellaris development diary. Today's dev diary is going to be a meaty one, covering several new features in the 1.5 'Banks' update, as well as some paid features coming in the (unannounced) expansion accompanying Banks. Please note that because of some sickness, we're a little behind in the interface department, so the interface graphics shown today are placeholders and not what will be in the final product.

Species Rights (Free Feature)
The big new feature we'll be talking about today is Species Rights. Previously, what rights your species had were controlled through a set of policies that could only discriminate between 'your founder species' and 'everyone else'. We felt that this was an area in need of more granularity, both to make playing a multispecies empire more interesting and also to create more of a sense of distinction between your pops. Thus, in Banks, it will now be possible to individually determine the rights and obligations of each species in your empire. In addition to setting rights for a species currently in your empire, you can also set rights for species outside your empire (for example granting species you would like to attract to your empire via migration Full Citizenship and a good living standard) and have a default set of rights that is applied to any species you have not specifically configured the rights for.

The most fundamental status of a species in your empire is Citizenship. Citizenship is the overall set of rights and privileges given to a species: Whether they are free or unfree, whether they can participate in the political processes of the country, what restrictions can be placed on them and even whether they have the right to live in your empire at all. In addition to rights and obligations, citizenship also affects Pops' migration attraction: A Pop that is currently enjoying Full Citizenship is unlikely to move to another empire where their rights would be curtailed, and Pops living under second-class citizen conditions are more likely to move somewhere that promises them a better life.

  • Full Citizenship: Species with full citizenship are fully integrated populations in your empire. They have the right to vote in democracies and can become leaders of all types. You are also forbidden from enacting population controls on them.
  • Caste System: Species with a caste system have a mix of full citizenship and slavery, with pops working in the farms and mines being enslaved and the rest being free to enjoy the fruits of the serfs' labor.
  • Limited Citizenshp: Species with limited citizenship are tolerated but not integrated populations in your empire. While not enslaved, their right to vote and stand for political office is curtailed, and you can place population restrictions on them and restrict them from being able to settle on your core worlds (more on that below).
  • Slaves: Species with this setting are all enslaved without exception. They have no rights whatsoever and live under the most squalid of conditions.
  • Undesirables: Undesirables are species that you do not wish to exist in your empire. Depending on your purge policy this can either mean that you mean that you target them for extermination, or just dry to drive them off from your worlds (more on that below).

Military Service is the martial obligations placed on this species by your empire. It can range from allowing Full Military Service as both soldiers and officers, allowing you to recruit generals and admirals from the species even if they would normally not be allowed to be leaders (for example due to Limited Citizenship) all the way down to a full exemption from all military service.

Living Standards represents how economically favored a population is, for example whether they benefit from social welfare or have restrictions placed on what kinds of occupations they can be employed in. The higher the living standards of a Pop is, the more Consumer Goods it will use, and the happier it will be (more on Consumer Goods below).

Migration Controls determines whether a species is allowed to freely migrate between worlds or not. This is always enabled for slaves and pops that are being purged.

Population Controls determines whether a species is allowed to grow its population or not. Species with population control will not grow new pops, but neither will their existing pops die off.

In addition to determining what a species is able to do, species rights will also affect a variety of other factors such as happiness and consumer goods (for example, Pops are generally not very pleased about being enslaved or having population controls placed on them). Different factions in your empire will also have different preferences for what species rights you employ, such as Authoritarian pops liking Caste Systems and Supremacist factions being less than happy with granting Full Citizenship to aliens.



Purge and Slavery Types (Paid Feature)
In addition to the free species rights given to everyone in the Banks update, there is also a paid element, namely the special Purge and Slavery policies that allows you define in which manner your empire utilizes slavery and purging vis-a-vis specific species. The default options (Chattel Slavery and Extermination) are always available even without the expansion, and those without the expansion can also make use of Displacement via a policy, but the rest are only for expansion owners.

The slavery types are as follows:
  • Chattel Slavery: This represents forced labor on a massive scale. Chattel Slaves have a bonus to food and mineral production and a large penalty to energy/science production and under a Caste System all Pops producing Minerals and Food will be enslaved.
  • Domestic Servitude: This represents a combination of plantation slavery and indentured servitude. Domestic Servants have no boost to any resource production and a small penalty to mineral/energy/science production, but increase the happiness of all non-enslaved citizen pops on the planet.
  • Battle Thralls: This represents a system of enforced martial serfdom. Battle Thralls have no boost to any resource production and a moderate penalty to energy/science production, but armies recruited from them are stronger.
  • Livestock: This represents a species that is regularly culled to be used as food. Livestock produce a fixed number of extra food, but are completely unable to produce any other kind of resource.
The purge types are as follows:
  • Extermination: The species is systemically killed off by any means available. This is the fastest form of purging, but pops subject to it are unable to produce any resources while they are busy dying off.
  • Displacement: The species is driven away through the use of forced resettlement and destruction of their homes. Displaced pops will not be killed, but rather will attempt to flee the empire to other, more welcoming empires, and might even try to settle uncolonized planets. This process is slow, but generates less outrage among other empires than the other forms of purging.
  • Forced Labor: The species is placed in camps and forced to do hard labor under brutal conditions with inadequate food and shelter, effectively working them to death. Pops doing Forced Labor will be killed off more slowly than through extermination, but will continue to produce minerals, food and (at a significant penalty) energy.
  • Processing: The species is processed into food for the consumption of other Pops. Pops being Processed generate a fixed amount of food and die off at a fairly fast pace, but cannot be put to use producing any other resources.
  • Neutering: The species is prevented from reproducing through chemical castration or biological modification, eventually dying off naturally. Neutered Pops continue to function normally and may even be given a high standard of life, but have a large penalty to their happiness. The speed at which they die off varies based on the species' natural lifespan, but is typically very slow.



Consumer Goods (Free Feature)
Another issue we're trying to tackle in Banks is mineral inflation. Mineral production has a tendency to snowball in the mid- and lategame, particularly in large, sprawling empires. In order to address this we've introduced a new mineral cost called Consumer Goods. Consumer Goods represents the portion of your industrial base that is occupied with seeing to the needs of your population, ie producing butter instead of guns. Each Pop in your empire will use a certain amount of Consumer Goods each month, with the amount primarily dependent on their living standards. Each unit of consumer goods costs a certain number of minerals dependening on factors such as ethics, traditions, whether your empire is engaged in a defensive war and so on.



Refugees and Core Worlds (Free Feature)
The last thing we'll be covering today is some new policies that tie into the mechanics of species rights. The Core Worlds Population policy determines which Pops are allowed to live on your core (non-sector) planets, and can be set to either allow only citizen Pops (Full Citizenship/Caste System), citizen and slave Pops (Full Citizenship/Caste System/Slaves) or open them up to all species. If you restrict your core worlds and there are prohibited Pops living there, they will move away, either migrating to your sectors or fleeing your empire altogether if there is another empire willing to take them. Whether or not another empire is willing to accept those fleeing purges, slavery and resettlement depends on your Refugees policy. You can choose to accept other species will open arms, allowing refugee Pops to freely move into your empire, be more restrictive and accept only those Pops you have deigned to grant citizenship, or simply shut down acceptance of refugees altogether.



Right, that's all for today! Next week we'll be talking about something I know a lot of people have been wanting for *quite* some time: Orbital Habitats. Don't miss it.

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Useful links
Official Website
Stellaris Wiki
Stellaris Development Diary Archive

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January 12

Ascension Perks



Hello everyone and welcome to another Stellaris development diary. Today we'll be talking about a feature that was hinted at in last dev diary, Ascension Perks. Ascension Perks are related to the Traditions and Unity system, but is a paid feature in the (unannounced) expansion accompanying the 1.5 'Banks' update, rather than a part of the update itself. Those without the expansion will get full access to the Traditions and Unity features, but not to the Ascension Perks themselves.

Ascension Perks
The idea behind the Ascension Perks is to provide more unique unlockable features for Empires, and to provide the player with the ability to determine an 'endgame' for their species: What their empire is striving towards. Perhaps your goal is to go all-in on AI, replacing the frail biological bodies of your pops with immortal machines, or to harness the psionic potential of your species and reach a higher form of existence, allowing your empire to tap into other planes of being? All these and more are covered by the Ascension Perk system.



Each time you complete a Tradition tree, you will unlock one Ascension Perk slot, of which there are 8 in total. There may also be other ways to unlock slots, such as from certain rare technologies or as a reward for a particular event chain. This slot can then be filled with any of the Ascension Perks available to you. The final number of perks is not yet set down, but there are currently more than 20 and there will likely be more added. Ascension Perks have pre-requisites, which can for example be a particular technology or tradition, a certain number of Ascension Perk slots to be unlocked, or a specific ethos or government type. Some Ascension Perks are one-offs that simply provide a bonus to a particular area of your empire: For example, a bonus to border range, or cheaper terraforming. Others unlock new features, such as the ability to construct new types of space structures (more on in later dev diaries).

Finally there are the three 'Species Endgame' paths: The biological path, the spiritual path and the synthetic path. These three paths each consist of two perks, the first of which unlocks access to the second once a number of other pre-requisites have been met. The paths are mutually exclusive, and once you start heading down one of them, the other two are locked off.

  • The Biological Path focuses on mastery over biological evolution. The first level of it gives access to more gene points and significantly cuts the cost of genemodding projects, while the second level expands the options available during genemodding in addition to further providing more points and less cost.
  • The Psionic Path focuses on developing the psionic potential of your population. The first level unlocks new psionic technologies and benefits, while the second level allows your empire to reach a higher level of existance and communicate with the beings present there.
  • The Synthetic Path focuses on the replacement of biology with machinery. The first level allows you to turn your population partly synthetic through the use of cybernetics, while the second level replaces your biological pops with robots, turning your empire entirely synthetic.


That's all for today! Next week we'll be talking about the concept of species rights and obligations.

Also about eating pops.

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Useful links
Official Website
Stellaris Wiki
Stellaris Development Diary Archive

149 comments Read more

Reviews

“Calling Stellaris Europa Universalis in space is probably reductive, but it was the first thing I did in this review not because they are almost exactly alike, but because, when I put away my empires and get on with my day, the stories that have played out in these digital worlds embed themselves in my brain, and I so desperately want to tell people about them. Both games tickle the part of my brain that wants every battle to have some greater context, every move I make to be part of a larger narrative. Stellaris manages to do this without history to lean on, though, and does so with aplomb.”
9/10 – PCGamesN

“Stellaris is easy to comprehend and exciting to execute, which is a perfect combination for a genre notoriously difficult to break into.”
9/10 – Destructoid

“Right now, Stellaris is a very good space-based strategy game, but a few months down the road, it could evolve into a fantastic one”
8.2/10 – Hooked Gamers

Nova Edition




Stellaris Nova Edition includes:

Digital Original Soundtrack

The Stellaris soundtrack delivers two and a half hours of original music, including bonus tracks and alternate versions not included in the game. Composed by Andreas Waldetoft with appearances by the Brandenburg State Orchestra and Mia Stegmar, listeners will hear themes meant to evoke discovery and far-reaching exploration through the vast expanse of space through the fusion of orchestral and electronic music. MP3 and lossless FLAC are included.

Nova Forum Icon

An exclusive Forum Icon for the Nova Edition of Stellaris

Exclusive Alien Race (Cosmetic DLC)

Colonize the unknown and build a glorious spider empire! An exclusive alien race will be added to your game with a unique arachnid design. When your friends ask how you obtained these new spacefaring spiders, be sure to tell them you found the deal on the web.

Galaxy Edition



Stellaris Galaxy Edition includes:

Digital Original Soundtrack

The Stellaris soundtrack delivers two and a half hours of original music, including bonus tracks and alternate versions not included in the game. Composed by Andreas Waldetoft with appearances by the Brandenburg State Orchestra and Mia Stegmar, listeners will hear themes meant to evoke discovery and far-reaching exploration through the vast expanse of space through the fusion of orchestral and electronic music. MP3 and lossless FLAC are included.

Exclusive Alien Race (Cosmetic DLC)

Colonize the unknown and build a glorious spider empire! An exclusive alien race will be added to your game with a unique arachnid design. When your friends ask how you obtained these new spacefaring spiders, be sure to tell them you found the deal on the web.

Digital Collector’s Book

Join the creative team behind Stellaris to learn how the game's aesthetic was designed and realized for Paradox's most visually unique game to date. From concept art all the way through full illustrations and 3D renderings, this exclusive 130-page book includes a collection of game art unavailable anywhere else -- along with insight into the thoughts and research that drove these designs, the problems the team faced along the way, and the ways they finally brought these visuals to life.

Stellaris: Infinite Frontiers novel by Steven Savile (ebook)

From best-selling author Steven Savile comes an original novel based on the science-fiction setting of Paradox's Stellaris. When the Commonwealth of Man receives proof that they are not alone in the universe, humanity is divided: should our species seek salvation in potential friends among the stars, or prepare for an inevitable war? What discoveries await the colony ship as they journey into the unknown to find the source of a mysterious alien signal? Download and read on epub, mobi (Kindle) and PDF.

Exclusive Avatar and Galaxy Forum Icon

Show your love for Stellaris on the Paradox Forums and other social networks, and Make MySpace Great Again!

Signed Wallpaper

Pay your respects to the pioneers who ventured forth into the unknown with this desktop wallpaper signed by the Stellaris development team.

About This Game

Explore a vast galaxy full of wonder! Paradox Development Studio, makers of the Crusader Kings and Europa Universalis series presents Stellaris, an evolution of the grand strategy genre with space exploration at its core.

Featuring deep strategic gameplay, a rich and enormously diverse selection of alien races and emergent storytelling, Stellaris has engaging challenging gameplay that rewards interstellar exploration as you traverse, discover, interact and learn more about the multitude of species you will encounter during your travels.

Etch your name across the cosmos by forging a galactic empire; colonizing remote planets and integrating alien civilizations. Will you expand through war alone or walk the path of diplomacy to achieve your goals?

Main Features

  • Deep & Varied Exploration.
  • Enormous procedural galaxies, containing thousands of planets.
  • Explore Anomalies with your heroic Scientist leaders.
  • Infinitely varied races through customization and procedural generation.
  • Advanced Diplomacy system worthy of a Grand Strategy Game.
  • Ship Designer based on a vast array of technologies.
  • Stunning space visuals.

System Requirements

Windows
Mac OS X
SteamOS + Linux
    Minimum:
    • OS: Windows 7 x86 or newer
    • Processor: AMD Athlon II X4 640 @ 3.0 Ghz / or Intel Core 2 Quad 9400 @ 2.66 Ghz
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Graphics: AMD HD 5770 / or Nvidia GTX 460, with 1024MB VRAM. Latest available WHQL drivers from both manufacturers.
    • DirectX: Version 9.0c
    • Network: Broadband Internet connection
    • Storage: 4 GB available space
    • Sound Card: Direct X 9.0c- compatible sound card
    • Additional Notes: Controller support: 3-button mouse, keyboard and speakers. Special multiplayer requirements: Internet Connection or LAN for multiplayer.
    Recommended:
    • OS: Windows 7 x64 or newer
    • Processor: AMD Phenom II X4 850 @ 3.3 Ghz or Intel i3 2100 @ 3.1 Ghz
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: AMD HD 6850 / or Nvidia GTX 560TI, with 1024MB VRAM
    • DirectX: Version 9.0c
    • Storage: 4 GB available space
    • Sound Card: DirectX 9.0c-compatible sound card
    • Additional Notes: Controller support: 3-button mouse, keyboard and speakers. Special multiplayer requirements: Internet Connection or LAN for multiplayer.
    Minimum:
    • OS: OS X 10.8.5 or newer
    • Processor: Intel Core i5 @ 2.5Ghz
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: ATI Radeon HD 6750 / NVIDIA GeForce 320 or higher with 1024MB VRAM
    • Storage: 4 GB available space
    • Additional Notes: Controller support: 3-button mouse, keyboard and speakers. Special multiplayer requirements: Internet Connection or LAN for multiplayer.
    Recommended:
    • OS: OS X 10.11 or newer
    • Processor: Intel Core i5 @ 2.9Ghz
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Nvidia GTX 750M / or AMD R9 390M with 1024 VRAM
    • Storage: 4 GB available space
    • Additional Notes: Controller support: 3-button mouse, keyboard and speakers. Special multiplayer requirements: Internet Connection or LAN for multiplayer
    Minimum:
    • OS: Ubuntu 14.04 x86
    • Processor: AMD Athlon II X4 640 @ 3.0 Ghz / or Intel Core 2 Quad 9400 @ 2.66 Ghz
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Graphics: AMD HD 5770 / or Nvidia GTX 460, with 1024MB VRAM. Latest available proprietary drivers from both manufacturers.
    • Storage: 4 GB available space
    • Additional Notes: Controller support: 3-button mouse, keyboard and speakers. Special multiplayer requirements: Internet Connection or LAN for multiplayer.
    Recommended:
    • OS: Ubuntu 14.04 x64
    • Processor: AMD Phenom II X4 850 @ 3.3 Ghz / or Intel i3 2100 @ 3.1 Ghz
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: AMD HD 6850 / or Nvidia GTX 560TI, with 1024MB VRAM (Latest available proprietary drivers from both manufacturers)
    • Storage: 4 GB available space
    • Additional Notes: Controller support: 3-button mouse, keyboard and speakers. Special multiplayer requirements: Internet Connection or LAN for multiplayer.
Customer reviews Learn More
Recent:
Very Positive (730 reviews)
Overall:
Very Positive (11,184 reviews)
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