Endless Legend is a 4X turn-based fantasy strategy game by the creators of Endless Space and Dungeon of the Endless. Control every aspect of your civilization as you struggle to save your homeworld Auriga. Create your own Legend!
User reviews:
Recent:
Mostly Positive (119 reviews) - 70% of the 119 user reviews in the last 30 days are positive.
Overall:
Very Positive (6,918 reviews) - 83% of the 6,918 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date: Sep 18, 2014

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Recent updates View all (67)

August 26

Announcing Endless Legend: Tempest & closed beta contest

Hey guys and gals!


We've been hinting at it for a pretty long time now, from subtle hints in our Meet the Team blogs to our answers around the forum, with tote bags labelled Endless Legend: Tempest mysteriously making an appearance during our Beer2Gether at Gamescom. The cat's finally out of the bag: Endless Legend's fourth expansion will be Tempest, focused around control of the seas of Auriga!










This expansion will introduce the Morgawr, an aquatic-based Major Faction specialized in naval warfare and manipulation of other creatures. Factions will now be able to fight for dominance of the oceans through the control of sea fortresses, although they will have to wrestle these from the grasp of the Fomorians, a new Minor Faction.






Bring your daughter to work is always a big success with the Morgawr.




Naval Warfare: Naval battles for everyone! You will be able to battle on the seas. All seaborne units can instigate and reinforce sea battles. Exotic mechanics and tile effects spice up this new type of battle!

Ocean Control with Weather System: Arcane structures have emerged from beneath the waves: these Endless relics provide strategic and luxury resources as well as other bonuses to the empire able to control them. To do so, their mysterious guardians must be parlayed with or defeated in battle. The same guardians will patrol “wild” ocean regions, making them a lot less safe to cross without a convoy. Expect clouds, rain and storms to appear on your map.

Sea Fortresses and Minor Faction FomoriansNew generated ocean regions, including a Sea Fortress, offer strategic locations in the water for players to battle it out. Anywhere from zero to three fortresses are located in each ocean region, so expect more in oceans that are more strategically pivotal, between islands or continents.  












Tempest Closed Beta Contest



Applications for the Closed Beta of the Tempest expansion for Endless Legend are now open, and will run until September 1st (10 am, CEST)!  If you think you're the Beta tester that we need, send us an email at: Playtest [at] Amplitude-Studios.com. The e-mail address must be valid if you want to receive an answer! 




Please include:

  • Your Amplitude forum username 
  • Your first name, last name and date of birth 
  • A link to your Steam account (it must be public then!) 
  • A DXDiag in text format so we can ensure you can run the game in satisfactory conditions (here is how to make one. Click on "Save all information" at the bottom right of the DXDiag window and attach the DXDiag to your e-mail) 
  • A couple of lines to tell us why we should choose you to be among the lucky ones to try out Tempest!
  • Let us know if you participated in previous beta tests for Amplitude games - non eliminatory



20 lucky players will receive:
  • An access to the Closed Beta on Steam 
  • A unique forum badge 
  • An access to the Tempest private forum to post your impressions
Also, please, only sign up if you think you will have time to play the game and be able to provide some constructive feedback. The closed beta will run from the 15th of September onwards for a couple of weeks.





Thanks, and good luck!






35 comments Read more

April 28

Patch [1.4.4]



Hi everyone,

Here are the release notes for the latest 1.4.4 patch.


CHANGES AND ADDITIONS [Echoes of Auriga Content]
  • The Urces village marked for step 3 of the "Pet Sounds" quest is now located in regions colonised by players.

IMPORTANT FIXES [All versions]
  • Fixed an issue with the Unleashed Potential capacity of the Cultist preacher unit
  • Fixed a potential desync in multiplayer when using battle actions on owned units

FIXES [All versions]

  • Fixed an issue with AI major factions who were reluctant to accept another empire opening borders to them
  • Fixed an issue where false information was displayed for clients regarding the number of past winters
  • Fixed several typos reported by community

FIXES [Specific content]

  • [Shifters only] Fixed an issue where the aspirate resource rate gain was not explained to the player
  • [Shifters only] Fixed Shifter Nature form health regeneration bonus
  • [Echoes of Auriga only] Fixed an issue with "Running with the Hunt" quest where multiple minor faction quests could happen in the same region (sometimes blocking the current quest)

Thank you for sharing your feedback on Steam and the official forum! Check out this thread if you encounter an issue and would like to report it.

~Amplitude Studios

19 comments Read more

Reviews

“Plays out on one of the greatest, most beautiful maps in strategy gaming history. It combines style, substance, and setting into a marvelous overall experience for both empire management and tactical combat.”
8.3/10 – IGN

“BEST STRATEGY GAME 2014 - Reinvents the 4X genre, mirroring what XCOM did for tactical turn-based games, and they have, as today Endless Legend brings the genre to new heights.”
9/10 – Hooked Gamers

“COMMENDATION FOR DESIGN 2014 - At every stage Endless Legend shines. Where it takes from the past, it puts its own spin on it. Where it innovates, it does so cautiously and mostly successfully. Amplitude Studios has created another astounding story-driven game, that really has taken the best bits of RTS, RPG and 4X. This is a game that wannabe developers should play and learn from.”
89% – PC Gamer

Special Edition

Endless Legend Digital Game

  • Play Endless Legend on PC and Mac.

Official Digital Soundtrack

  • All Endless Legend tracks created by FlybyNo in mp3 format.

”Endless Legend” Amplitude Badge

  • Adds a unique badge to your Amplitude account.
  • Adds 500 G2G to the value of your votes on our website.

Endless Legend Digital Game

  • Play Endless Legend on PC and Mac.

Endless Legend "Frozen Fangs" Add-on

  • Adds “Ice Wargs” to the minor faction cast of the game.
  • Adds Namkang to the hero cast of the game.
  • Adds a unique “A song of only ice” trait for your custom factions.

Official Digital Soundtrack

  • All Endless Legend tracks created by FlybyNo in mp3 format.

”Endless Legend” Amplitude Badge

  • Adds a unique badge to your Amplitude account.
  • Adds 500 G2G to the value of your votes on our website.

Dungeon of the Endless "Deep-Freeze" Add-on

  • Adds the “The Refreezerator” spaceship that unlocks a new mode for the game.
  • Adds Kreyang to the hero cast of the game.

About This Game

Create your own Legend

Another sunrise, another day of toil. Food must be grown, industries built, science and magic advanced, and wealth collected. Urgency drives these simple efforts, however, for your planet holds a history of unexplained apocalypse, and the winter you just survived was the worst on record. A fact that has also been true for the previous five.


As you discover the lost secrets of your world and the mysteries of the legends and ruins that exist as much in reality as in rumor, you will come to see that you are not alone. Other peoples also struggle to survive, to grow, and perhaps even to conquer.

You have a city, a loyal populace, and a few troops; your power and magic should be sufficient to keep them alive. But beyond that, nothing is certain… Where will you go, what will you find, and how will you react? Will your trail be one of roses, or of blood?

Explore fantastic lands.

  • Lead one of eight civilizations each with a unique gameplay style and storyline.
  • Survive through cold dark seasons that drive Auriga to its end. Will it also be yours?
  • Experience an endless replayability with randomly generated worlds and quests.
  • Set the size, shape, topography and more... to create your own world to discover.

Expand beyond the unknown.

  • Conquer, build and develop villages into feared fortresses or wonderful cities.
  • Assimilate powerful minor factions and use their special traits and units wisely.
  • Hire, equip and train your heroes to become army leaders or city governors.
  • Raise your civilization by finding mysterious artefacts and forgotten technologies.

Exploit every opportunity.

  • Evolve your civilization through the discovery of new advanced technologies.
  • Collect Dust, luxuries and strategic resources tradable on the marketplace.
  • Keep one step ahead of other civilizations through trade and subtle diplomacy.
  • Choose from different victory conditions and adapt your strategy on the fly.

Exterminate fools who defy you.

  • Experience an innovative dynamic simultaneous turn-based battle system.
  • Use unit equipement, abilities and the terrain to overcome your opponents.
  • Zoom out of a battle and rule the other aspects of your empire seamlessly.
  • Define your custom civilizations and confront those created by your friends.

System Requirements

Windows
Mac OS X
    Minimum:
    • OS: Windows Vista / 7 / 8 / 8.1 / 10
    • Processor: 2.5Ghz Intel Core 2 Quad Q8300 or equivalent
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: 1GB nVidia Geforce GT460 or equivalent, 500 MB ATI HD4850 or equivalent
    • DirectX: Version 9.0c
    • Storage: 4 GB available space
    • Sound Card: DirectX 9 Compatible Audio
    • Additional Notes: Minimum Resolution: 1280 x 720
    Recommended:
    • OS: Windows Vista / 7 / 8 / 8.1 / 10
    • Processor: 3.5Ghz Intel Core i5 or equivalent
    • Memory: 8 GB RAM
    • Graphics: 1GB nVidia Geforce GTX660 or equivalent, 1GB ATI HD7850 or equivalent
    • DirectX: Version 9.0c
    • Storage: 4 GB available space
    • Sound Card: DirectX 9 Compatible Audio
    • Additional Notes: Minimum Resolution: 1280 x 720
    Minimum:
    • OS: MAC OS X 10.8 or higher
    • Processor: 1.7 GHz Intel Core i5
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: 512 MB AMD Radeon HD 4850, NVidia GeForce 640 or Intel HD 4000
    • Storage: 4 GB available space
    • Additional Notes: Minimum Resolution: 1280 x 720
    Recommended:
    • OS: MAC OS X 10.8 or higher
    • Processor: 2nd Generation Intel Core i5 (or greater)
    • Memory: 8 GB RAM
    • Graphics: 1 GB NVidia 750 (or better)
    • Storage: 4 GB available space
    • Additional Notes: Minimum Resolution: 1280 x 720
Customer reviews
Customer Review system updated Sept. 2016! Learn more
Recent:
Mostly Positive (119 reviews)
Overall:
Very Positive (6,918 reviews)
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4,727 reviews match the filters above ( Very Positive)
Recently Posted
R.O.B Two Limes
32.4 hrs
Posted: September 25
When I first played it, I couldn't get through a single game, uninstalled it and left it alone. After playing Civ V for so long I felt it was lacking in something, hard to say what exactly. I came back to it, and my previous thoughts on it went away. Each game I've played so far has been a blast. So I definitely recommend it.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
123
148.5 hrs
Posted: September 25
4X is Love!!

:) beat CIV anytime of the day.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
MoonMoon
26.6 hrs
Posted: September 25
man, this game is awesome
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Luisfius
26.6 hrs
Posted: September 24
The pretiest ♥♥♥♥♥♥♥ 4x out there for sure.

The music alone is worth the price of admission. The game is fantastic, and incredible.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Widow's Bane
118.2 hrs
Posted: September 24
This is an amazing 4X strategy game.
Some level of fantasy is very welcome to me; as well as a strong background to each unique nation and the world as a whole. Each group plays very uniquely; as well as the ability to create yout own. The generated worlds are amazing, and you have a great amount of control to make them just how you want them.

I really have nothing negative to say. Its still being patched and tweaked as well as atleast 1 more DLC in store at the time of writing so don't worry the development team is great!

If youre a fan of 4X you'll love this. Even if youre not youll very likley love it anyways!
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Moragnog
19.1 hrs
Posted: September 24
Fun game, combats not the best of the city builder games, but its nice to have a story with my civilization builder game.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
HCH
9.1 hrs
Posted: September 24
I bought this ages ago, and played about thirty hours offline. It was magical.

>Start new game as a bunch of Magic Robots
>Build first city on a tile absolutely surrounded by Wine
>Exploit Wine as soon as possible
>Make sure I have the Wine booster on constantly
>Slowly build an Empire of outrageously drunk Magic Robots
>Shamble around, poking my head into any shiny dungeon I can find
>Find a sweet sword for my beloved Robotic Overlord
>Kit his drunken butt out in all the latest bling
>Nothing but the best for my bae
>My nation continues to drink
>My nation grows more powerful
>My Robotic Overlord is killing EVERYTHING
>Come into contact with the Not-Argonians
>Liberally bribe the friendly lizard people with Wine
>A great friendship is born
>Come into contact with the VERY HUNGRY insect people
>Come into contact with greedy humans
>Come into contact with SPEHSS MEHREENS
>Come into contact with creepy puppet people
>Everyone except me attacks the friendly lizard people
>Lizard people are weirdly bad at making friends
>Start a drunken worldwide brawl in defense of lizard friends
>Lizard friends very appreciative
>Much trading is done
>Lizard people like wine almost as much as the Magic Robots
>CHUG CHUG CHUG
>Together we plot the downfall of sobriety
>My nation continues to get absolutely hammered at every opportunity
>My Robotic Overlord grows in power absurdly quickly
>Wine makes you stronk
>My nations spreads like a bad rash
>With liberal application of Wine I begin to conquer the world
>One hundred and fifty turns in half the map is already ours
>Tragedy strikes
>In a massive push the friendly lizards have been devoured by the hungry insects
>Our nation collectively pours one out for our homies
>The armies are gathered
>The Robotic Overlord is stupidly overleveled
>His bling has bling
>Revenge is swift
>Revenge is violent
>Revenge rewards us with EVEN MORE WINE
>My Robotic Overlord is winning entire battles by himself
>My tide of fancy Terminators that smell like bad grapes scour the world
>CRUSH KILL DESTROY BOOZE
>The SPEHSS MEHREENS collectively soil themselves
>The SPEHSS MEHREENS bring in the greedy humans
>Puny humans
>Legendary Bling acquired
>Terminator army drunker and shiny-er than ever
>Robotic Overlord ruins the SPEHSS MEHREEN hero with un-shocking ease
>Both opposing armies crushed beneath my stumbling gold encrusted jackboots
>Your cities are belong to us
>Victory feels good
>Celebratory drinks are had
>Build one more city
>Expansion victory
>Oops
>Accidentally won game before I fight the creepy puppet people
>Have more celebratory drinks anyway
>Finish game with over 400 reserve Wine

10/10 pour me another
Helpful? Yes No Funny
noldoriangamer
83.3 hrs
Posted: September 24
An amazing 4X game, much like Civilizations 5, but far better. The graphics are amazing and the combat is unique.
However, it is a highly complex game, so dont underestimate it!
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Chuffa
11.4 hrs
Posted: September 23
I know there is an issue with the mac usage of this game but it really needs to be fixes for it to be considered a mac and pc game, other then that i did manage to get like 150 turn game in with it only crashing a couple of time and it does seem like a fun game.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Shan
72.7 hrs
Posted: September 22
I bought this in 2014......Still playing. hell of a game!
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Most Helpful Reviews  In the past 30 days
37 of 38 people (97%) found this review helpful
Recommended
162.4 hrs on record
Posted: August 27
Why on earth are the recent reviews mixed? On any other game, that would set off red flags for me as a potential buyer, and that's terrible.

Endless Legend is a beautiful 4x strategy game, making terrific use of procedural generation for its terrain and ensuring a fairly unique experience for each game. The writing and "story" of the game are fantastic and I find myself drawn far into the Endless lore. It also gives plenty of customization and modding support, which is practically a must-have for indies nowadays. Even in the vanilla game, you can tweak values in the map generator and turn off/on victory conditions if you aren't fond of some. You can also create your own faction, with its own traits, in case you aren't fond of the original ones.

Amplitude seems to care a lot for updating the game's content. I hear there's an expansion coming out soon that will - finally - add naval warfare to the game, which is one of the few things Endless Legend lacks.

Honestly, if you're into 4x strategies and like detailed, pretty world-building, this game is a must-have.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
24 of 26 people (92%) found this review helpful
18 people found this review funny
Recommended
711.3 hrs on record
Posted: September 2
Eh. It's Fun. It will help you kill a few hundred hours.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
58 of 92 people (63%) found this review helpful
3 people found this review funny
Not Recommended
68.8 hrs on record
Posted: September 5
This is one of those situations where the a-typical steam system of "Thumbs up or thumbs down" doesn't really work. This game isn't made badly, and I would recommend it to some people. But overall, this game was vastly overblown and overrated, at least from a strategic point of view.

1. Graphics were ok, but not great. I did really like the artwork and the way the world looked, but it has a lot of tearing and graphical issues. Nothing so sevre it will ruin the game, but enough to note.

2. Music was actually pretty cool. It's always nice to hear a new soundtrack instead of hearing songs I know I heard on my PS2 games. This was easily the best part of the game.

3. Story for the game, while well written, is delivered poorly. It's 2016; time to actually record voice tracks and make cut scenes, not just constantly throw text boxes at us. This is a common complaint in multiple genres, and it outright confuses me why this games community is so forgiving. The bland delivery prevents any of the stories from feeling different.

4. Gameplay is a strange thing to me. I WANTED to enjoy it. I put effort into learning this game and really tried to see the joy, but every campaign ultimate leads to the same place. Difficulty settings have huge curves between them. Easy is boring, normal is unforgiving. After hours of research, I found that most who are good at this game A. Copied someone elses strategy and B. Save scummed to hell. The difficulty is not provided by clever AI who utilize the rules of this game and world, but rather they get military and economic buffs.

I ran two campaigns that had a 6th faction (I was playing against 5 comps) screw everything. The game was actually fun for the bulk of the campaign. I had cool wars, overcame adversity, and when I was almost crushed outright, I managed to claw my way back and win. It was a blast... until I encountered the bug faction. They had not warred with anyone, yet had higher level troops. They had NONE of the higher end resources (not even tier 1), so how they controlled so much and could have so many while producing so little was beyond me. By the end of the campaign, he overran us with much larger armies (this faction got 14 per army to all the rest of us having 8) and crushed the campaign. It wasn't fun or interesting, it was aggitating. I don't mind losing to a strong opponent. But this is supposed to be a strategy game, how does having no resources or battles result in better armies? This is evidence that tactics and actual strategy do not come into play here. Resource domination and harassment is a very common tactic in games and even IRL, so why it is almost meaningless in this game is beyond me.

5. Combat is TERRIBLE. The battle system is a bad minigame by any other games standards. If you have ever played Sid Meir's Pirates and invaded a city, you experienced a better battle system. Most mobile games are better. The strategies are all based on bad mechanics, and the AI will exploit these bad mechanics to force troops to follow them in a mosh pit style circle. Almost anything would have been better than this.

Honestly? I did have some fun with this game. But the last third of every campaign I played turned an otherwise enjoyable game for me into a burden or a chore. I WANT to like this, and I want to recommend it. That's ultimately what frustrated me so bad about this game. My desire to enjoy it was smothered by bad campaign structure.

And I would actually recommend this to people of a certain taste. I have friends who love games that are extremely time consuming and daunting, and I'm sure they would enjoy it. But for gamers of my taste and desire, this game is not going to provide you the tactical planning and strategic objectives you're looking for.

In closing, I know this review will be receiving a 0% helpfulness rating. For some strange reason, the X4 genre can produce pure garbage (not nessicarily this game, but I'm referring to others) and never receive an ounce of criticism. It's a strange enigma, that's for sure.

I wrote this review as best I could to avoid complaining and simply try to warn gamers of my taste not to buy it because it will not provide an experience they will enjoy. Right now, I'm sure there's someone like me who's more about tactics > micromanagement looking at purchasing this game, and the reviews for this game are extremely misleading in this regard. Do yourself a favor if you're looking at this game, do more research than you would for the average video game, because this game isn't a clear cut case of universal appeal.

In the end I will resist rating this by Good/Bad or by 1-10/10. It's not that simple. It's actually a good game that's well constructed, I just think it's being marketed to a vast number of people who are just not going to like it. I'd like to help those individuals spend their money on something they will actually enjoy.
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15 of 16 people (94%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
Recommended
169.6 hrs on record
Posted: August 31
tl;dr: Chinese reviewbombing still can't shake the "Very Positive" rating

The current "Mixed" reviews is because a Chinese language Workshop mod had a link to pirate an older version of this game in its description. The modder was given two contacts from Amplitude, an audience on the forums, and ample time to address the issue, but he outright refused to cooperate.

So instead of possibly having his work officially integrated into the game, there is no Chinese language support, period.

If none of this matters to you, congratulations! You're a sensible human being who understands localization requires time and money, and that Steam is a legal game distribution site. I binged this game when I got it on sale (ironically, from the Chinese New Year sale) and enjoyed it so much that I got seven extra copies to play with friends.

If the art of the game and the concept of a 4X-RPG-TBS intrigues you, pick it up on a sale! You won't regret it.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
13 of 13 people (100%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
Recommended
185.0 hrs on record
Posted: August 28
4X game with impressive depth. The factions really play differently from each other, giving a large boost to replay value. If you like micromanagement of every aspect this game is for you. Sci Fi world and lore is really cool. Honestly, I bounced off this game a bit when I first played it, but once you have a firm grasp on the mechanics and what everything does/means it really unfolds into something very impressive.

Also you can customize your military units down to whether they use a sword, axe, two handed weapon etc. If you like Civ but find it a little simplistic (especially combat) this game is for you!
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
13 of 15 people (87%) found this review helpful
Recommended
96.6 hrs on record
Posted: August 28
Interesting 4x turn based strategy with many different factions which have unique play style.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
13 of 15 people (87%) found this review helpful
Recommended
50.2 hrs on record
Posted: September 4
I'm going to tell you why this game currently has a mixed review instead of its past positive review. The author of an unofficial Chinese-translation mod didn't respond back to the developers about his or her mod, and it was promptly removed somehow, which I don't even know how as I'm guessing they patched it where you can't change the game's text; I don't know. I know this doesn't exactly sound very much sense, since mods are made and used, at times, against the wishes of its creators. But rumor has it that the mod had a link that led anyone who used the mod to a Chinese pirating site, and this reference to a pirating website broke Steam's terms-of-service. The sudden removal of this mod angered the Chinese speaking community, and they protested the developer's action by bombarding the game with recent negative reviews.

So, unless you're Chinese who can't read any of the game's supported languages, don't take the recent reviews to heart. If you are Chinese and who can read this; well, you gotta do what you gotta do. You can either support your fellow countrymen and bully the developers about the removal of the mod, or ignore it and play the game in English. You're responsible for your own actions so carry on.
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8 of 8 people (100%) found this review helpful
Recommended
87.0 hrs on record
Posted: September 1
This is a fantastic 4X game. As someone who played plenty of Civilization V, this was the perfect thing to come to when I got bored of it. It's a really complex and fun game, but one warning I will give is that it takes a long time to understand the whole game. Honestly it was like 25 hours in that I finally got it properly, but it is worth it. Everything in game makes logicial sense and it is set up to (once you understand it) make everything you need to do simple and not at all time-consuming. The word I would use is 'satisfying.'
  • Exploring and finding ruins: satisfying
  • Finding and exploiting luxury and strategic resources: satisfying
  • Battles: extremely satisfying
  • Quests: satsifying
That is one thing that makes a great change from Civ, you get quests to do, set depending on what faction you are or given to you by minor factions (equivelant of Civ's 'city-states) or found in anicent ruins. Doing the quests give you rewards, keep the game ticking along and they also give the game a 'story-like' feel, which I really enjoy.

Good points:
  • You can stack your units!
  • Each faction has its own personality and play-style, each game with a different faction is completely different
  • Very satisfying and enjoyable battle sytstem (probably the best i've encountered in a 4X game)
  • Every unit can be customized and changed with loads of different weapons and armour
  • Enemy AI is reasonably good
  • Everything in game makes sense and works properly (once you get the hang of it)
  • Exploration is fun and satisfying
  • The tech tree is massive and full of goodies
  • The citizen system is fantastic and makes it really easy to concentrate on one area of empire building
Bad points:
  • Takes a really long time to understand everything in game
  • Has the same problem as Civ, the beginning of the game is a lot more fun than the end-game
  • Tutorial probably teaches you about 5% of what you actually need to do in game
  • Some factions are a bit OP
Overall I would highly recommend this game to anyone who enjoyed Civilization V. It's the Jesus and Mary Chain of 4X games; hard to get into initially, but then so much to explore.
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7 of 7 people (100%) found this review helpful
Recommended
31.2 hrs on record
Posted: September 1
It is unique 4x game. If you do not want all the same, old formula of Civ and MOO, and yet still be pure 4x game, then try this game, you will not regret.
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5 of 5 people (100%) found this review helpful
Recommended
150.5 hrs on record
Posted: September 8
Came to store page to buy DLC after a multi-month break and saw Recent Reviews 'Mixed'!! Honestly, that is unconscionable. This game is amazing. I have spent 150 (oh god) hours playing this in single and multi player.

It does appear inpenetrable and shallow at first, but the depth on this game in incredible. It is somewhat like Civilization, but with wildly different goals, land preferences, empire expansion styles, and units per civilization (not including the civs you can custom build). This is easily the best 4x game since Civ IV and I don't think it is going to get unseated any time soon.
On harder levels of difficulty you must actually understand the game and units really well, and actually manually perform battles. You cannot steamroll the game with a complete lack of knowledge - this is a good thing.

2 things to all those that say it is too hard: 1) do not scout like mad in the first 10 turns, like in Civ - this causes everything to aggro on you and wipe you out. 2) the LEVELS of your units matter much more than anything else, until late late game - keeping units from dying is imperative.
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