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 Sins of a Solar Empire sells 500k
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Sins of a Solar Empire sells 500k - Sep 04, 2008 17:41
Ironclad/Stardock's surprise PC hit "Sins of a Solar Empire" has sold 400,000 copies at retail and another 100,000 through digital distribution.  The developers attribute part of this success to the forgiving system requirements. 

Part of Sins' success, Wardell says, is that it was designed to ensure a wide potential audience. "Sins of a Solar Empirewas explicitly designed to work on a wide variety of machines," hesays. "It will run on a four-year-old video card, and it looks great."

I was just curious if anyone here has played it.  I don't do much in the way of PC gaming but it looks pretty fun.

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Re:Sins of a Solar Empire sells 500k - Sep 04, 2008 22:40
Agent has .. Agent is this like a traditional 4X game ?

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Re:Sins of a Solar Empire sells 500k - Sep 06, 2008 06:17
I have it, it is a good games and you can get sucked up for hours online, but I was disappointed at the lack of single player campaign, it's basically non-existent and they have created a back story that could be tremendously explored with a proper campaign.
Agent Ghost

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Re:Sins of a Solar Empire sells 500k - Sep 07, 2008 04:17
I like it more now that they fixed a lot of the bugs.  They also improved the graphics in the latest path, the textures are higher res and the effects are also improved. 
At first glance it looks like a 4X game but its simplified enough that it deserves to called an RTS.  It plays like a slow paced RTS without any story elements. Matches can last hours easy.  That's not to say the action is slow.  The game keeps you busy.  

The game has three resources.  Money, Crystal and Metal.  You get money through your planets by collecting taxes.  The game handles this on it's own.  You don't get to choose the tax rate or anything like that.  You have the option to upgrade the planet a little with defences, resource efficiency and the likes.  Usually each planet has two or three asteroids near by that will either give Cystal or Metal once you install a mining platform on it.   You also need to build logistical stations to meet prerequisites in the research tree.  In order to get enough logistical buildings you need a few planets.  Research costs money and time.  Nothing is too expensive, but theres a lot of things to research, it's easy to finish a match without completing all the research.

Research is important, it's more an indicator of success than the cause for success though.  It's more important to know when and where to attack/defend.  Sometimes playing the game feels like chess, it's all about where you place your pieces.  It's really easy to let your guard down as you attack one planet meanwhile some fucking pirates or another player are attacking your home base.  The maps are so big that you simply can't see everything at once.  When you zoom out far enough the ships disapear from sight. When zoomed in on the action you can only see one planet area.  Some maps have 30 planets.

Speaking of Pirates, they're powerful NPCs that sort of act like an annonymous way to attack another player.  You can put a bounty on any other player and the pirates will basically attack them doing damage equal to the bounty.  Not sure exactely how it works but it's something like that.  Pirates will attack whoever has the highest bounty placed on them.  They're expensive but they can really fuck up your shit.  I find them extremely annoying and when i play alone I always turn them off.  A feature that wasn't available when the game shipped.  However I view them as a way to balance the game or possibly breaking it, the richest players are the only ones that can pay huge bounties, so what happens is that the strongest players can end up in a biding war against eachother.  This really makes the weak players lives a lot easier.  If the best players are broke and fending off pirates they can't build new ships fast enough.  Thus leaving some planets wide open for the little guys.  The problem with this, is that in order to build large fleets later in the game you have to upgrade your fleet size.  Along with an initial cost of the upgrade theres an "upkeep" that goes with this. A percentage of all your income gets taxed permanentely.  So if you lose a bunch of planets/asteroids and you have a huge upkeep, you're basically fucked.  The game has a lot of subtle strategy.

Overall the game mechanics are good but the content feels like something from an expansion or a mod.  Like Emo said, there's no story at all.  Which doesn't bother me that much.  You have a brief introduction to the three races in the instruction manual and skirmish mode, that's it.  Of course there's multiplayer mode but obviously no story in that either.  There's a lot of maps but they all feel the same.  There's small maps, medium maps and large maps.  The three races have superficial differences, it's not like Starcraft where each is distinct and requires different tactics.  In Sins each race has a few different abilities but these things don't change how the game is played.  As for the visual ship models I find them to be quiet plain and uninspired, forgetable.  I must have put in 20 hours in the game and if you asked me to draw any specific ship I wouldn't remember what it looked like by name, nor would I be able to name any ship if you showed me a picture of it.  They're just not distinctive enough.  They look like they were concepts that should have been scrapped but due to a possible tight development schedual they just went with it. 

The good news is that this game is made for modding.  There a several fanatics that are already working hard on making entire conversions.  Star Trek, Star Wars, Halo, whatever your poison, it's getting made.  I'm looking foward to this game in the ST or Halo Universe.  This game's already pretty good but I have a feeling this one will be a late bloomer.  The game was rushed but the fans will finish it.

Overall I give it a 7.5  It has the potential of an 8.5 if some of the fan mods work out. 
<message edited by Agent Ghost on Sep 07, 2008 04:23>

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