Massive scale 4X-RTS set in space. Control hundreds of planets, manipulate galactic politics, research numerous advanced technologies, and command thousands of units and hundreds of planets in your quest for galactic dominance.
User reviews:
Recent:
Mixed (13 reviews) - 61% of the 13 user reviews in the last 30 days are positive.
Overall:
Very Positive (503 reviews) - 81% of the 503 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date: Mar 27, 2015

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Recent updates View all (21)

April 22

Wake of the Heralds Release and v2.0.0 update!

Our first expansion, Star Ruler 2: Wake of the Heralds, is now officially out on steam! Purchase it for $9,99 from the steam store page.



Along with the release of the expansion, the base game has received an update to version 2.0.0 containing a number of fixes and improvements. You can read about some of the main changes to the game below:

Graphics

  • Added a number of new post processing graphics options, including Bloom, Godrays and Chromatic Aberration.
  • Many many more improvements to shaders and and lighting to improve graphics quality
  • The visual surface of planets is now actually rendered to match the biome tile grid from the planet overlay. City lights will automatically appear where buildings are!

AI
  • The AI has received numerous improvements to how it plays the game. Please report any bugs you find in its new behavior!
  • You can now determine whether an AI is aggressive, passive and biased against humans separately from difficulty.
  • You can now set the particular ways an AI cheats and how much it cheats at them.

UI
  • The open tabs, quickbars, and camera location are now saved and restored when you load a game.
  • Improved the planet requirement UI on the bottom left of the planet overlay.
  • Added a Replace tool to the ship designer that replaces the subsystem you click on the design with the type of subsystem you have selected while keeping the same size.

Races & FTLs
  • Mechanoid population above 1 now provides 2 labor, but population above the maximum no longer provides any.
  • Tweaked the income values of mechanoid planets over population so they don't jump up and down as much.
  • Fling Beacons now cost FTL energy to construct and have a small FTL upkeep.
  • Tweaked the cost and duration of opening slipstreams based on the size of the generator.

Notable Fixes
  • Fixed exploit for exporting labor more than once.
  • Fixed exploit with Frugal trait where planets could be Level 2 without any tier 1 resources.

Note to Modders
You will need to mark your mod as compatible with this version after you have update it to be so. To do this, either use the ingame Mod Editor to select a Compatibility value of 200, or add the following line to your modinfo.txt:
Compatibility: 200
Any mods that haven't added this line will be automatically disabled on game start. Users can forcibly re-enable these mods if they want to, but are warned that the mods are incompatible and may break their game.

18 comments Read more

April 21

Wake of the Heralds Feature Highlight: The First

Star Ruler 2: Wake of the Heralds releases tomorrow, Friday April 22nd! You can read our final feature higlight about the second new race, "The First", below.

The First


Although their once great empire is gone, reduced to nothing but remnants by the ravages of time, the minds of those who chose to live forever still carry on.
The planet Atrozal, hollowed out and brimming in circuitry; where a trillion souls discarded their bodies to be part of the final dream of the ancients.

The First care little for the physical world, yet the arrival of the Heralds spells a threat even their paradise does not escape. Send out massive orbital replicators to find raw materials and convert entire planets into automated refinery worlds and computation hubs. The entire weight of this galaxy must be unified if we hope to stand a chance of surviving.


Silicon Continent

Because the First are a fully virtual race, they do not have any population or civilian infrastructure or any of that messy stuff. Instead, their planets are covered from top to bottom in industry and circuitry, each part performing the valuable task it was programmed to do.



The First have an entirely different set of buildings to place, and placing buildings is the only way they can make use of resource pressures.

Having little use for food, luxuries or infrastructure, all planets are immediately at the level their resource requires, no lower and no higher.

Replicators

Rather than colony ships, the First take control of planets by using their Orbital Replicators. These giant orbitals filled with specialized manufacturing hardware and fitted with specialized thrusters can rapidly replicate and assemble entire factories for placement on the planet they are orbiting.



In order to control a planet, an Orbital Replicator must be moved to it. Only planets that have a replicator orbiting it can build any buildings.

Base Materials

One of the functions of the Orbital Replicator is placing enormous Transmuters on various planets. When the First deem a resource useless, such as food, they instead decide to convert the resource and the matter on the planet itself into Base Materials for further use in replication.



When a resource has been converted to base materials it can then be exported to a different planet. Various buildings require the continuous consumption of imported base materials to operate, so you will need to convert many different planets to fuel your industry.

Omake: AI Settings



The AI has received a number of improvements to how it plays the game, and you can now control parts of its behavior during game setup. You can also determine exactly in what way and how much an AI cheats, if you feel like teaming up for a comp stomp or just want a bigger challenge.

Note that the AI improvements and settings will be available to all players through an update to the base game, and will not require the expansion to be purchased.

Multiplayer

In order to allow people to play multiplayer with as many others as possible, the expansion content automatically gets unlocked in multiplayer depending only on if the host player has the expansion installed.

So even if you don't own the expansion, hop into a multiplayer game hosted by someone who does and you will be free to try out any of the new stuff!

12 comments Read more

Reviews

“Star Ruler 2 expertly balances complexity in gameplay with an intuitive, easy to pick up system for players.”
'Recommended' – eXplorminate

About This Game

Star Ruler 2 is a massive scale 4X/RTS set in space. Explore dozens, hundreds, or even thousands of systems in a galaxy of your choosing, expand across its planets, exploit the resources you find, and ultimately exterminate any who stand in your way. The fate of your empire depends on your ability to master the economy, field a military, influence galactic politics, and learn what you can about the universe.

Galactic Economy

Colonize planets, each with one of dozens of resources, working in unison to create bustling centers of production. The resources you choose matter, and will guide your empire and its conflicts throughout the entire game.

Custom Ships

Design ships that fit your needs, strategies, and tactics using our new 'blueprint painting' approach to ship design. Quickly and intuitively lay out the armor, weapons, engines, and internals of your vessels.

Politics with Power

Diplomacy and influence gathering are reinvented as a core mechanic of the game, giving meaningful alternative options to players and serving as a platform of interaction both between players and AIs as well as humans in multiplayer. Harness your influence to annex territory, spy on enemies, aid allies, and more! You truly have the opportunity to affect the political landscape.

Massive Scale

Running on our internally developed Starflare Engine, Star Ruler 2 is able to make full use of multi-core cpus, and runs on both 32 bit and 64 bit machines. The size of a galaxy is only limited by your hardware and ambitions!

Intricate Research

Expand your knowledge through a grid of numerous technologies, big and small. Improve nearly every aspect of your empire.

Complete Moddability

You can modify the gameplay, graphics, interface, and virtually every other facet of the game through scripts and data files, giving unprecedented freedom to the modding community to implement any feature they want. Use the in-game mod editor to add or change most content, and upload your mod to the Steam Workshop!

Full Multiplayer

Star Ruler 2 features complete multiplayer support with up to 28 players and AIs in the same game.

Games above 8 players or in galaxies of several hundred systems may exceed the capacity of a typical home connection. Consider playing very large games on LAN.

Cross-Platform Support

Star Ruler 2 supports both Windows and Linux, with all game features supported fully on and between both operating systems.

System Requirements

Windows
SteamOS + Linux
    Minimum:
    • OS: Windows Vista
    • Processor: SSE2 Capable processor
    • Memory: 1 GB RAM
    • Graphics: AMD or Nvidia Graphics card w/ 512MB RAM, OpenGL 2.1 Support
    • Network: Broadband Internet connection
    • Storage: 600 MB available space
    • Additional Notes: Broadband required for internet play. Scroll wheel or full access to two mouse buttons required.
    Recommended:
    • OS: Windows 7 64-bit
    • Processor: Intel Core i7 or AMD Phenom II
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Graphics: NVIDIA GTX 460 w/ 1GB RAM
    • Network: Broadband Internet connection
    • Storage: 600 MB available space
    Minimum:
    • OS: Linux
    • Processor: SSE2 Capable processor
    • Memory: 1 GB RAM
    • Graphics: AMD or Nvidia Graphics card w/ 512MB RAM, OpenGL 2.1 Support
    • Network: Broadband Internet connection
    • Storage: 600 MB available space
    • Additional Notes: Broadband required for internet play.
    Recommended:
    • OS: Linux
    • Processor: Intel Core i7 or AMD Phenom II
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Graphics: NVIDIA GTX 460 w/ 1GB RAM
    • Network: Broadband Internet connection
    • Storage: 600 MB available space
Customer reviews
Customer Review system updated! Learn more
Recent:
Mixed (13 reviews)
Overall:
Very Positive (503 reviews)
Recently Posted
mirela747
1.1 hrs
Posted: August 27
extremely good game. learn and play it.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
280 Pound Lips
43.3 hrs
Posted: August 26
It's good
Helpful? Yes No Funny
KGB6oo6
3.4 hrs
Posted: August 26
I should have bought this first instead of Stellaris on my other account, as I like this game much more. My kid thought he'd like Stellaris too, bought one for him also, it is just boring for me, sorry paradox... Oh well.

Sorry devs of Star Ruler that I got the wrong game first and waited until yours was on sale, this game is much easier to get into for me than the other, sorta like sins of a solar empire with 10x more going on. I like it.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
mr palomar
7.7 hrs
Posted: August 25
There are many in depth reviews already that go into the unique elements of this game - I just wanted to add a quick thumbs-up in support of the game and the developers. This is a deep, different - and Fun - space 4x game!
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Shailo
18.3 hrs
Posted: August 25
Star Rules 2: strangulated bureaucracy in space.

Many key aspects of the game are arbitrarily and nonsensically regulated. An important example is an absurd planetary specialization with one fixed resource per planet that is either consumed in its entirety or totally exported. Even the necessities of life have to be brought in from light-years away and are subject to interruption by marauders and other ne'er do wells. Specialization is fine, but it shouldn't be fixed. It should be chosen through the planetary development, and there should be more than one. And most emphatically, it shouldn't preclude providing the necessities of existence but should come on top as the social development evolves. Then the system would make sense and allow more complex interactions where products can be manufactured from components. More complex products would need a more complex infrastructure and thus provide a meaningful notion of advancement. Here the linkages are arbitrary from pre-defined producers, and so it remains a frustrating vestigial system that one has to dance oneself into knots to work within.

A whole bureaucratic layer of 'diplomatic' nonsense exists that is openly a mechanism for parochial advancement. There is no collective purpose; no concept of engendering good will and social relations. There are no treaties or operations of mutual benefit. The only tool available within it is manipulation though a system of cards bought through 'diplomatic points'. Yet significant benefits can accrue from its edicts. But then where do the funds come from to support its largess? And who would support such a body anyway? The answer is that *nobody* supports it financially and so it is really just a lottery run by the Cosmic Overlords that one has to spend significant time on lest one's adversaries scoop up every prize. The game would be much better off without it because it is, at bottom, an interrupt and a distraction from doing the important business of building one's empire in a methodical manner.

Another issue is that there is no concept of saving money. Like almost every modern government, the governments in Star Ruler 2 continually run deficits and are constrained by immediate finance. At least they can only borrow from next year's income so they can't bankrupt the nation by overpaying for immediate needs, but it seriously fosters a spend-now mentality lest the resources of one's budget are lost. Further, large purchases, like major fleets, can easily bog production down across the empire since the expense has to be taken out of cash-flow rather than being saved up for over time. A feature that is, again, a bizarre and arbitrary constraint that makes no sense at all.

Nevertheless, there are some good aspects of the game. The ship design facility , for example, is very flexible and can support pretty much unlimited designs. You need sufficient command and power to operate the thing, but what is in it and where they are placed is completely up to the player. One twist is that you build fleets of ships and command the Flag ship. Each Flag ship has a certain command ability and subordinate ships serve under it, and formidable fleets can be built up in that manner. The combat is in real-time but with multiple fleets, each of 100 or more ships, individual control is pretty much out of the question anyway.

Research allows you to improve various production facilities as well as improve the combat and defensive systems of ships. You can also research new abilities, like shielding, cloaking and new armor types under a rather complex branching system. As usual, research points are generated by research facilities built on planets, but all buildings have maintenance costs as well as production costs and that will inhibit research until the economy can support it.

In sum, the game tries very hard to be innovative, but unfortunately, a lot of its innovation adds constraints that are not very well thought out in terms of sensibleness and their impact on gameplay. As such they tends to strangle the gameplay rather than enhance it, and they do so in ways that are nonsensical.

A lot of people like this game, but in my opinion it is because they are willing to put up with nonsensical and arbitrary constraints merely because they are different than those of other 4X games, not because they add significant value beyond what is usually done. A good example that innovation does not necessarily imply improvement.

Not recommended.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
[Ghetto]Two Shoe$
76.2 hrs
Posted: August 25
You want us to pay 9.99 for an expantion while the Base Star Ruler 2 cant even called anything but post-alpha, almost beta.

Star Ruler 1 is still a better game than 2.

Please get your reality checked.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Shtinky
22.1 hrs
Posted: August 24
Music, Great. Gameplay, awesome. The AI is very good and this game is great to play with friends.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
DickBurden
2.6 hrs
Posted: August 20
This game is garbage.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Kuliyamasan
5.0 hrs
Posted: August 20
Game system likes a old game.
The large scale ships battle art is exited for me.
The star resouce distribute makes me angry.

Total:A OK price for waste holiday time.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
WoodenDOOM
7.4 hrs
Posted: August 15
Less-good sequel to an awesome original.

EDIT: This is just my opinion. I'm sure many many people enjoy this game, because it's obvious the dev cares about it. But I just loved the orginal so much, and Galactic Armory ( a Mod for star ruler) was discontinued because of star ruler 2. Broke muh heart.

I also find the trade networks and leveling up my systems tedious. Who knows? maybe Star Ruler 3 will be better than No Man's Sky.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Most Helpful Reviews  In the past 30 days
2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
Recommended
7.7 hrs on record
Posted: August 25
There are many in depth reviews already that go into the unique elements of this game - I just wanted to add a quick thumbs-up in support of the game and the developers. This is a deep, different - and Fun - space 4x game!
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
6 of 11 people (55%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
Not Recommended
18.3 hrs on record
Posted: August 25
Star Rules 2: strangulated bureaucracy in space.

Many key aspects of the game are arbitrarily and nonsensically regulated. An important example is an absurd planetary specialization with one fixed resource per planet that is either consumed in its entirety or totally exported. Even the necessities of life have to be brought in from light-years away and are subject to interruption by marauders and other ne'er do wells. Specialization is fine, but it shouldn't be fixed. It should be chosen through the planetary development, and there should be more than one. And most emphatically, it shouldn't preclude providing the necessities of existence but should come on top as the social development evolves. Then the system would make sense and allow more complex interactions where products can be manufactured from components. More complex products would need a more complex infrastructure and thus provide a meaningful notion of advancement. Here the linkages are arbitrary from pre-defined producers, and so it remains a frustrating vestigial system that one has to dance oneself into knots to work within.

A whole bureaucratic layer of 'diplomatic' nonsense exists that is openly a mechanism for parochial advancement. There is no collective purpose; no concept of engendering good will and social relations. There are no treaties or operations of mutual benefit. The only tool available within it is manipulation though a system of cards bought through 'diplomatic points'. Yet significant benefits can accrue from its edicts. But then where do the funds come from to support its largess? And who would support such a body anyway? The answer is that *nobody* supports it financially and so it is really just a lottery run by the Cosmic Overlords that one has to spend significant time on lest one's adversaries scoop up every prize. The game would be much better off without it because it is, at bottom, an interrupt and a distraction from doing the important business of building one's empire in a methodical manner.

Another issue is that there is no concept of saving money. Like almost every modern government, the governments in Star Ruler 2 continually run deficits and are constrained by immediate finance. At least they can only borrow from next year's income so they can't bankrupt the nation by overpaying for immediate needs, but it seriously fosters a spend-now mentality lest the resources of one's budget are lost. Further, large purchases, like major fleets, can easily bog production down across the empire since the expense has to be taken out of cash-flow rather than being saved up for over time. A feature that is, again, a bizarre and arbitrary constraint that makes no sense at all.

Nevertheless, there are some good aspects of the game. The ship design facility , for example, is very flexible and can support pretty much unlimited designs. You need sufficient command and power to operate the thing, but what is in it and where they are placed is completely up to the player. One twist is that you build fleets of ships and command the Flag ship. Each Flag ship has a certain command ability and subordinate ships serve under it, and formidable fleets can be built up in that manner. The combat is in real-time but with multiple fleets, each of 100 or more ships, individual control is pretty much out of the question anyway.

Research allows you to improve various production facilities as well as improve the combat and defensive systems of ships. You can also research new abilities, like shielding, cloaking and new armor types under a rather complex branching system. As usual, research points are generated by research facilities built on planets, but all buildings have maintenance costs as well as production costs and that will inhibit research until the economy can support it.

In sum, the game tries very hard to be innovative, but unfortunately, a lot of its innovation adds constraints that are not very well thought out in terms of sensibleness and their impact on gameplay. As such they tends to strangle the gameplay rather than enhance it, and they do so in ways that are nonsensical.

A lot of people like this game, but in my opinion it is because they are willing to put up with nonsensical and arbitrary constraints merely because they are different than those of other 4X games, not because they add significant value beyond what is usually done. A good example that innovation does not necessarily imply improvement.

Not recommended.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
10 of 19 people (53%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
Recommended
290.9 hrs on record
Posted: August 1
This is a fun and quirky game of 4x space domination. It definatly has alot of new and innovative gameplay elements that are not in other 4x space games, without destroying the core of the 4x experience. Unique style of planet/resource management. Interesting style of custom ship building and combat. A strange card based system of galactic diplomacy that is almost like another whole game within the game. This is a definate buy if you are looking for a 4x space game that goes in a different direction then so many others but still lets you blast your enemies to bits and conquer the universe.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
Most Helpful Reviews  Overall
651 of 683 people (95%) found this review helpful
22 people found this review funny
Recommended
139.2 hrs on record
Posted: June 8, 2015
There are two types of people who play Star Ruler 2.

The first type are the kind of people who will not like this game. These people generally will lodge complaints including but not limited to:

- Not as complicated as the first game
- Art style differs from my preference
- I dislike the economy system
- Combat is too hands-off
- There is no "soul"
- The menus don't look like the first game
- Research sucks
- Diplomacy is confusing/useless

These people also often do not have more than a few hours in game time. I'll tell you right now, at 5 hours in I had exactly the same complaints. The problem is that SR2 doesn't have a very good tutorial and that a lot of the complexity is somewhat hidden. Some of those complaints are also purely subjective and therefore cannot be addressed beyond "Yep, ok". For the rest of them, see below.

To a person who hasn't played more than one or two games against some regular AIs, the combat would most certainly appear to be blob vs. blob. However once you realize how damage works and how to effectively utilize the support AI patterns it becomes obvious that, while not micro intensive, the combat is far from hands-off. It's just that the hands-on part happens in the preparation. Armor type makes a HUGE difference. Taking a torpedo on reactive armor will produce very different results that taking it on ablative. Neutronium may seem like an uber-armor but since it's so heavy and expensive it's rarely cost-effective. Weapon types are very important, the difference in effectiveness between a railgun and a laser depending on the situation can be vast. Ship speed is vital to not only engaging in time but fleeing as well, especially if you have no hyperdrive. Speaking of FTL, the type you have plays a big role in how you approach combat. Pinpoint Hyperdrive strikes are certainly effective, but fling beacons are far superior for offense (due to their speed and usually lower cost vs distance) though they lack easy-retreat capability. Gates are usually only used for turtling, but a gate in deep space can attack an opponent at points and from directions they don't expect. Slipstream can be used the same way except with less setup and more risk (since the enemy can also use your slipstream tears). There is a ton of depth, but again most (though not all) of it is in the setup.

The economy would certainly seem strange and stupid, after all you can't stockpile resources and have to expand. Except that the cycle system discourages inactive play and actually results in the player actually making MORE ships and improvements than they would otherwise. Dry Docks can help you build ships that you couldn't otherwise afford. The forced expansion eliminates AI abuse strategies and also makes empire defense more of a priority. Even the smallest world can be a critical component in the supply chain for your L5 forge world. Losing a link in the chain doesn't have immediate crippling effects but it's certainly not something to ignore. The pressure system eliminates the need to micromanage planets beyond choosing good supplies and letting the system do its work. The level 0 resources (they don't contribute to planetary development) provide a variety of useful effects and if used correctly can provide a significant advantage. Terraforming can help provide more L1 resources for extra income and Artifacts/building/diplomacy can provide food and water if there is a shortage.

Research would seem like a step back from the first game until you realize that SR1's research system, while unique, was inherently broken. Ships were outdated before they were even finished being built and the effectiveness of subsystems grew to such absurdities that tech advantages were instant-win conditions. The new tree applies passives automatically without the need for retrofit except if new systems are to be applied, and while not infinitely scalable is not the silver bullet in engagements that it was in SR1. Good tactics and planning can easily defeat fleets of twice the strength of what you're throwing at them. However it's fairly obvious why a lot of people would fail at this, since if you believe the combat to be DeathBlob Fights 2015 you wouldn't think of using any flanking or varied fleet makeups.

Very few people complain about the diplomacy beyond "I don't like it" but the solution is simple. Add "Influence Peddling" to the main screen by clicking the "...". Keep track of who votes where and USE THE SYSTEM. It's incredibly effective if you put some time into it. Save some cards in case you need them. If you ignore it you're inevitably going to get screwed by it at some point. Oh and for god's sake read the Zeitgeist cards. Zealotry can be game changing and so can Co-operation.

Well that was longer than I expected.

The second kind of person is the type that will buy this game and enjoy it because they aren't looking for MOO2 Remake #232432 and are willing to put some time in to truly appreciate its uniqueness. If you read this far without downvoting this review you're probably in the latter category. Bear in mind that this is by no means a perfect game, but it is certainly worth the money. I paid full price for this game, and that is not something I do very often.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
113 of 123 people (92%) found this review helpful
8 people found this review funny
Recommended
47.6 hrs on record
Posted: January 26, 2015
I do not even know where to begin. There are some amazing ideas in this game, and it seems a lot of polish even during early access. The diplomacy is unique and very complex, with influence and interactions that feel very very real. The planetary resource systems are fascinating to me, as is the resulting trade networks that grow organically. The ship builder is actually better than the first Star Ruler, which had an amazing ship builder. FTL was weak in Star Ruler 1, here there are 5 different methods each unique and tactical. Combat seems solid, manageable, and interesting. The flagship system means that you are ordering around fleets, not ships, but you still have a nice amount of control and the ship numbers are amazing. Everything is . . . perfect.

I'm a highly critical gamer with jaded tastes. I've been disappointed by one 4x game after another. MoO3, Endless Space, Sword of the Stars 2, all sad memories. Even Galciv and Distant Worlds weren't quite good enough for me. I have never been so completely blown away just playing a tutorial, realizing the depth of the systems I'm seeing laid out in front of me. Assuming there is nothing horribly wrong with this game that is hidden from me currently . . . well damn, I'll say it, this might be the game that surpasses Master of Orion 2.

It's an overused cliche, but it fits with this game. Things could go wrong, the AI may turn out to be useless, or some other chronic mistake, but I don't think so. Star Ruler 1 was visionary and flawed, fascinating but clunky. It seems they learned a lot from that game. Seeing this come from a small studio . . . I hope it gains the accolades it deserves. I also suspect modding will be amazing, since Star Ruler 1 had a wonderful modding scope, and I suspect they did the same here.

Buy this game. No seriously, if you like 4x gaming at all, buy Star Ruler 2. This isn't a game you buy just to support the ideas of the devs, though those ideas are amazing. This is the game I wish I had paid more for, because I think I cheated the devs and got way more than I paid for.

:::Post-release:::

The game remains very strong, with several major improvements over the beta. The ship design remains the high point of the game, and sadly the AI remains a little weak. The AI is competent, certainly. It does know how to play the game properly, but it lacks aggression. On the other hand, it is smart enough to know when it has lost.

I won a game recently without actually taking a single enemy planet. I out-expanded them slightly, and while they fought wars against each other, I offered surrender to whichever side was near to losing. Most of them accepted subjugation, since I was a friendly power that was roughly 10 times their strength. After I did this three times, I turned on the one remaining AI. I declared war, sent my massive ships. Three of my ships arrived in their systems and I received an offer of surrender before they could reach the planet. I think they just saw the ships blotting out the sun and said "Nope, this is not winnable." That is smart design and saved me a long slog to a certain victory.

Recent improvements to the tech tree have made it far more understandable and elegant. Technology in general seems far more unique and useful as compared to the beta tech tree, which was somewhat repetitive. Performance remains very good, I've yet to see a bug or crash in any of my games. The races and various FTL methods have vastly improved from the beta, and the AI knows how to play every combination without error.

The modding community is rapidly expanding, as predicted, and has already furnished several very solid mods. The devs have already incorporated some of the best additions as core gameplay, which does not surprise me. I still recommend this game highly, it remains a very original and solid 4x game. I have high hopes for the future, and I do feel they have delivered a solid game as it currently stands. Of course, I always yearn for more.
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101 of 110 people (92%) found this review helpful
4 people found this review funny
Recommended
187.9 hrs on record
Posted: March 27, 2015
Having played for over 40+ hrs so far, my conclusion is that this is a solid 4x space game. Space 4x is my favorite genre and I've plaved many of them, and this game comes off as a very original and innovative game to me (have not played Star Ruler 1).

First off, the game is an RTS, but its really meant to be paused...a lot (early on at least), and thats ok. It takes quite some time to get the hang of how colonizing works, what to build, what orbitals do, how pressue works, etc. There is a wiki to help you with most things, and some things you have to figure out by trial and error. I've restarted quite a lot of games because I'd always realize something new I wasn't doing. Main thing is if it seems too complex, just hang in there, read the wiki, experiment and you will figure it out, and its well worth it, trust me!

-Research is nice, but the research screen could of been better. Easy to get lost, but it works.

-Ship design is daunting(for me). Others I'm sure will enjoy it. Thankfully you can have the AI design any size ship you want, or you can see what other players have designed and just use their ship!

-Diplomacy is unique, but good. Has a system where you can vote on certain propositions using cards and influence points. Has your standared treaties as well (don't need cards), like Alliance, Trade Treaty, Mutual Defense, etc.

-Exploration is nicely done as well. When you start exploring you can run into multiple things, like Debris Fields, which you can scan to bring up events in which you choose what you want to do. You can find Pirate ships guarding special items which will give you certain bonuses. There is also Artifacts to find in which you can spend energy to activate whatever bonuses they hold.

-Colonization is uniqe in this game as well, in which you constantly need to colonize planets for their resources in order to export them to planets you want to grow. It can get confusing, but pretty much how it goes is, growing a planet needs resoucres, and those resources need resources, and those resources need resources. Just pause the game, look at your surroundings, look at the planet you want to upgrade and it will tell you exactally what you need.

-Buildings can be constructed on each planet by the AI and user. The user can build things like Research complexes, Labor Factories, Megafarms, and more, the AI builds smaller buildings helpling the planet as it grows. You can also build Orbital structures that go in space, like shipyards, supply stations, outposts, etc. Careful on what you build though, they come at a hefty maintaince cost.

-Economy is done well in this game. You get income from population and "Income Pressue" and you have maintaince costs from buildings and ships. Every 3 minutes you will get cash based on the difference in your income and maintaince. So you can spend all your money and once the 3 minutes is up you will get another sum of money to spend in that time, based off the difference in Income and Maintanice. Seems confusing but it works nicely.

-Combat consists of having a flagship with multiple support ships under its wing. Those support ships can specialize in missles, rail guns, lasers, rockets, etc. The flagship has a certain amount of support capacity, which means you can only carry so many support ships. Your ships move in which your flagship is in the middle and the support ships make a big circle around it, so its like a circle of death. Combat is real time and you can zoom in to see the action, but its pretty much just a bunch of balls of death shooting at one another, but it works for me. Although ship building and making your fleets can be confusing.

-UI is only ok in this game for there are many things I wish they would of done. Can easily lose track of what you have building.

-Graphics and Sound are just average, if not below par. Graphics never mean much to me in these types of games, and the soundtrack didnt do anything for me. Effect sounds are ok at best.

-Scale can be whatever you want to be. You can choose from multiple types of universes and even ones with multiple universes, so you can make a game however big or small you want.

Overall this is a solid game that id give an 7.5/10. It might take a bit of getting used to, but its really fun once you get the hang of it. One of the better space RTS games to come along since Sins of a Solar Empire.
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90 of 100 people (90%) found this review helpful
7 people found this review funny
Recommended
21.3 hrs on record
Posted: September 22, 2015
Star Ruler 2 is a hybrid space 4X/RTS set in a fictional galaxy.

What is Great about this game:

- Intuitive and enjoyable fleet design, mechanics, and combat
- Nicely paced 4X/RTS that does not require twitch reflexes or ADHD to have fun
- High level of easy modification available and Steam Workshop support

What is Good about this game:

- Detailed ship builder allows for different ship designs as the game progresses
- Significant options such as diplomacy and trade to play the game as you would want to
- Good use of Steam features such as Workshop, trading cards, etc

What is Bad about this game:

- Frustrating initial difficulty that requires mods to become more reasonable
- Some systems such as the economy, resource dependency, and planetary development are too obtuse even after hours of play

Conclusion:

If you can modify the game to relax its difficulty to a more manageable degree, Star Ruler 2 has a lot of good ideas to bring to the space 4X/RTS genre.

8.0 / 10.0
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85 of 103 people (83%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
Recommended
100.4 hrs on record
Early Access Review
Posted: July 19, 2014
This game has the single best diplomacy system I've ever seen in a strategy game. The diplomacy revolves around influence and influence cards. Influence ticks up depending on the resources and research your empire has aquired, and can be spent on cards such as "negotiate", "annex planet", "protect system". These cards appear in a queue, and every empire has the option of spending influence to snag the card for themself, or to keep it away from someone else. Cards refresh quickly, so keep an eye on the queue if you're playing the diplomacy game. Some cards can be played for immediate effects, such a "protect system" protecting a system from hostile takover for some number of minutes. Other cards, such as "annex planet" require a vote in the galactic senate before they can take effect. Each empire can then play cards for or against the proposition. "negotiate" simply provides direct support or opposition, while cards like "rhetoric" have a greater magniture of support or opposition, but provide benefits to anyone who takes your side. This can lead to interesting situations where two empires you really don't care about are duking it out in the galactic senate, but you want to get in on the action to get the benefit of a "rhetoric" or "bribe" card. Overall, the system is fun, and gives diplomacy some real teeth, without it being overpowered.

Another system that is done very well is the economy. Every planet has a core resource that it can export to other planets, and every planet needs resources to grow and level up. Some resources need a certain level planet to be utilized. So the economy game revolves around creating chains of trade to funnel the right resources to the right planets. It's very steamlined, and provides tangible effects without much micromanagement. Additionally, most resources have secondary effects that can interact without other resources. So while it's easy to just get a planet up to a high level by giving it whatever it needs, you may want to save that grain for your homeworld, and find some fish for your asteroid mining planet. On the downside, the game currently lacks any kind of filter mechanic, so it can be difficult to find that one resource you're looking for in the late game. This being an alpha/beta game, I expect the issue to be resolved before launch.

The two systems that are still farily lackluster are research and ship design. While the core mechanics of ship design are great, the game currently lacks enough variety in ship parts to make it really interesting. This ties in with the very small number of research options. Interviews from before early access seemed to indicate that the research system is still in a very early stage. However, the devs are very genuine in their desire to make a great game, and I have no concern that these features will be fleshed out significantly before release.
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73 of 87 people (84%) found this review helpful
49 people found this review funny
Recommended
64.9 hrs on record
Posted: July 13, 2015
Alright, here's what happened-
I mined all of the asteroids in my home system, even tractoring some from other systems
I built and artficial planetoid and upgraded it to a level 5 and built a gate and outpost in orbit
I added additional layers to it for more space
I then filled it with production facilities and REALLY BIG GUNS
I then slapped a massive planetary thruster onto it
I then used a rename card to call it the Death Star


TL;DR- I built the Death Star

I also made a massive size 10,000 ship that can destroy a planet in 6-8 seconds(But it has a cooldown of 30 seconds).

Or another awesome thing-
I use a Star Forge to eat multiple star systems to build a massive ringworld around my capital
Unfortunately, it uses the health of the nearest star, so I left it there too long and the star went supernova and blew the Star Forge and the new fleet I'd been building to Hell!

TL;DR- Don't leave your Star Forge unattended or bad things will happen


1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000/10 - I built a Death Star and accidentally caused a supernova (and then later caused a couple on purpose)
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58 of 67 people (87%) found this review helpful
3 people found this review funny
Recommended
76.5 hrs on record
Early Access Review
Posted: March 27, 2015
Just really good. The UI is intuitive and beginners can easily get into this game. Multiplayer is enjoyable and it supports over 20 players, which is mad to think about. Galaxies can have as many systems as you want and you can even build more than one galaxy. You can even blow up a blackhole!

These are my favourite features of the game.

  • The race and FTL you choose can drastically change how you play the game.
  • Ship design can be fully customized with gun, armour and engine placement and much more. Having no armour in the back will leave your ships vulnerable in the back when retreating, for example.
  • Ship AI can be customised, ships can be made to attack in the rear or to shoot from afar, very impressive.
  • Buildings on planets can be placed but civilian buildings will automatically be generated based on the pressure of the planet (a resource to determine how much the population build)
  • You can build moon bases, halo-esk ring worlds, ship yards, customisable orbital stations and customisable gateways. Content like this just makes it more enjoyable.
  • The resource, democracy and research mechanic is much better than it was in Star Ruler 1 and is really enjoyable.

Some criticisms:

  • The AI is hard, even on easy, so I would recommend playing with passive AI first. You need to expand or you will be out-expanded by the AI, I wish you could create a more quality over quantity empire but an AI is a computer and the larger they get, the more they can do.
  • It needs to feature more modules for the ships, there were tons in Star Ruler 1 but not as many here.
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