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Star Lords Announced – A New Complex Space 4X TBS Game

By on August 3rd, 2012 5:07 pm

Star Lords | A Space 4X Game by Neogen2 Creations

And this was it for the week, so I thought. Well, not without a major new announcement. Get ready.

I just received word from Neogen2 Creations about their new space 4X game for the PC, which they have been developing for the past 2 years. They have announced it today. Its name is Star Lords.

What a way to end the work week. The announcement of a brand new 4X space strategy game with a list of features that look so good that it’s almost unreal. Check this list out:

Features

  • 8 races each with their unique ships, techs and playing style;
  • Tactical turn based combat;
  • In depth Espionage/Intel and Diplomacy components;
  • Plotting: Secretly finance a war against your rivals or prepare a surprise joint war;
  • A big living universe filled with pirate clans and independent races;
  • Generals: These unique and powerful units evolve as they battle;
  • Domestic Policies: Turn your empire into a dystopia, a utopia or something in between;
  • Complex AI that doesn’t cheat and plays by the same rules as human players;
  • Randomly generated galaxies, tech trees and units;
  • Modding support;
  • Lan, Hot Seat and Online Multiplayer with matchmaking.

See the full list on the official website.

Release date and Pre-order details

Star Lords is due for release in Q4 of 2012! The devs are accepting pre-orders starting today. Pre-ordering will grant discounts between 20% to 35% and development builds early access (currently Alpha 1). The devs say that pre-orders will be used to “polish the game, as well as get early feedback”.

I’ll play the Alpha 1 build and let you know my first impressions shortly. Stay tuned!

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68 Comments


  1. Scimarad says:

    OOH! Turn based ship battles!

  2. jay says:

    Holy crap ! Pre-ordered right away, will post my feedback after play a little.

  3. Ermdog says:

    Awesome, sounds like what we all have been waiting for. Hope it turns out to be a good game.

  4. Saracen26 says:

    Wow, that trailer has really got my interest.

    It’s taken the Starmap of Star Ruler, The bulk of Galactic civilizations 2 and Heroes of Might and Magic have all come together to spawn this rather promising title with its own twist on things.

    I’ll keep an eye on this for now (Got several games to get through from the Steam sale), and if the feedback is positive, I’ll certainly consider putting down £16.67 of my hard earned cash to help finance the developement.

  5. t1it says:

    Damn! Yet another game I probably *have* to buy :D

    Seriously though, this is the 4x RENAISSANCE!

  6. caekdaemon says:

    Sounds good, but turn based battles are a turn off for me.

  7. jay says:

    The first impression is definitely positive. It’s only a early alpha but it’s already fun to play you can see the direction the developers are going for. I can say I’ve had more fun with this early alpha than I had with Endless Space. It’s a hardcore 4x game, definitely. I was impressed, the game is promising and I’m loving some details like the espionage and the diplomacy options.

    • MattJ says:

      This is from the same company that ‘made’ moo3. But not moo2. Interesting!

      • Adam Solo says:

        The older Star Lords was made by Steve Barcia’s, the main developer of Master of Orion and Master of Orion 2. Wiki: “A prototype was developed under the name Star Lords though it was only released as freeware in 2001 as part of the promotion for MoO III”.

    • Adam Solo says:

      Interesting. Star Lords was Steve Barcia’s prototype name (aka MoO 0), the one he pitched to Microprose that came to be Master of Orion later on (http://moo3.quicksilver.com/game/starlords.html). As Star Lords back then was never published and released as freeware (or so the story goes) I guess there are no legal issues with Neogen2 using the same name no? I hope they are aware of this :) In fact that’s probably the all point behind their name choice.

  8. Smight says:

    Can you design your ships?

  9. Ashbery76 says:

    Can anyone spill the beans on the espionage and the diplomacy options?

  10. csebal says:

    /mode ENTHUSIAST
    wow, another 4X game to look forward to. If I would not be tapped out of my monthly game budget on 4X games, I would pre-order, if for nothing else, then to support them.

    It is good to see that there are so many 4X games being made in the recent years.. especially after the genre was neglected for such a long time.

    /mode OPTIMISTIC
    Given enough attempts, we will eventually get a 4x game / brand that is both fun to play, complete enough to enjoy and successful enough to not die in its infancy, so every new game out there is +1 chance to get it right.

    /mode SARCASTIC
    Sigh… turn based ship battles.

    I’m not saying they ruin a game, but if you wipe away all the pinkish glare of nostalgia you have about the MOO series, you will also remember how “easy/unbalanced” space combat in that one was and how going first often allowed you to wipe the enemy fleet without even taking a hit.

    Something that is not quite that easy if combat happens in real time. Also with the “invention” of the PAUSE button, the only advantage of turn based combat over real time combat (that is, the ease of management by removing the critical element of time from decision making) is gone.

    Also have we not had some discussion about how these videos tend to only show combat scenes and not much of the UI? :) Well.. with this one i think they managed to move onto the next level as they mostly just show scrolling views of the star map, with nothing specific or interesting on them.

    Hell it’s not even that good lookin’.

    If this is the best they had to show (and you generally want to show your best for such a video, even if that best only makes up a tiny fraction of your game), then they either have a VERY LONG road ahead of them, or plan to hop onto the 4x space fail train that’s running wild for the last year or so.

    • AstralWanderer says:

      “Sigh… turn based ship battles…you will also remember how “easy/unbalanced” space combat in that one was and how going first often allowed you to wipe the enemy fleet without even taking a hit.”

      That’s not really a “turn-based combat” problem, more a “player-based initiative” problem with every ship on one side moving before the other. This could be avoided by having ship-based initiative (using factors like crew experience, ship size, tech level) which would (mostly) have each side moving/firing one ship at a time. The downside is this would make multiplayer impractical for large-scale battles.

      Another approach would be to separate orders from action in combat, i.e. each side gives instructions to all their ships but no movement occurs until all orders are done, then all orders are run simultaneously. This should be more workable for multiplayer.

  11. salvo says:

    well, I preordered the game and got the login info to download the current build. Unfortunately, my browser, firefox keeps telling me that the download site is not trustworthy. Now, I’n not even able to login anymore. I’ve contacted neogen2, hope they fix it. Has anyone else experienced such problems?

    • Kuschelwampe says:

      For me the download went through just fine.
      Unfortunately after unpacking the game and clicking the .exe game loads shortly, then nothing happens. :-(

    • deepsace9 says:

      Yeah i got yahoo verizon and it tells me the same but i klick on other options and run game anyway and it works ,redownload the game and try that out …

  12. Harold says:

    salvo, I’ve pre-ordered too and got the login information 30 mins ago.

    With Chrome there’s no problem accessing the download site, no error messages or security warnings. Just downloading the file now …

  13. Jay says:

    I just pre-order Star Lords and can’t get the username and/or password to work.. I think I been scammed. Thanks guys..

  14. MikeDomingues says:

    No one has been scammed, we’ve been going through some problems with our user authentication software but we have since solved the problem. Everyone who pre ordered and went through the issues above, try now and then post here the results.

    Kuschelwampe: Could you go to our forum and post your specs? Thanks !

  15. Harold says:

    OMG what a great game.

    Just played the alpha 1.0 version for the first 2 hours and I’m totally BLOWN AWAY.

    Not a single crash, extremely well done, graphics are superb (although limited to 1024×768 during alpha phase, option menu greyed out at the moment), smooth scrolling.

    I’ll post my detailed gameplay related impressions later.

    • Evil Azrael says:

      “Not a single crash” <— SotS2 First hour player? ;)

      • Harold says:

        Played nearly the whole night, guess what I’m going to do right after writing this post ;-)

        Star Lords is currently more stable, complete and playable as SotS2 after the 23rd patch.

        Of course it’s risky to invest 20 USD into a completely unknown game in alpha status from a small indie dev. (10 $ more and I could have afford ES). But it was totally worth it. They must be very confident about their project, otherwise they wouldn’t let you download an early pre-release version.

        In contrast to:
        Endless Space: beta testing was possible, but currently NO demo.
        Legends of Pegasus: no alpha or beta versions at all, no demo planned.

        • salvo says:

          the great problem facing stots 2 now being that there are so many alternatives by now that even if the game would have been patched to a playable state, people like me who got it at release and have been hugely disappointed by its status then, probably don’t feel like wanting to invest the time and effort needed to get into it. To me, the game has already become history and greatly damaged cerberos’ and paradox’ reputation

  16. omegaai says:

    Just tell us please if there is ship design. I noticed that one of the features is randomized units, but this makes it seems like there isnt ship design. Ship design is a significant thing for the majority of us.

  17. Evil Azrael says:

    I am thinking about preordering. Is there a retail version planned, or will it be digital distribution only?

  18. Keith Turner says:

    This is an exciting and unexpected announcement. I like the fact that it isn’t using a starlane system for movement. I have a question/concern regarding the combat though. I noticed in the trailer (around :23 in) that the ships all have only one attack type listed (ex. Attack(Beam) 7 and Attack(Missile) 5). What I don’t know is if ship design is in the game or how complex the combat mechanics will be. If it’s a relatively simple system like Endless Space or Galciv2 I’ll be rather disappointed.

  19. Jeff P says:

    Very interesting. I’m particularly impressed that Neogen2 is furnishing alpha builds (and later betas) with the pre-order, indicating a reassuring confidence in their game. Quite a contrast with Legends of Pegasus, whose developers were “too busy” to provide preview copies to reviewers or even beta test their game. I’ll be following Star Lords closely.

  20. salvo says:

    well, star lords, has been announced on the German site 4players, imho the best german gaming site

    http://www.4players.de/4players.php/spielinfonews/PC-CDROM/32212/2108932/Star_Lords|4x-Strategiespiel_angekuendigt.html

    • Harold says:

      hi salvo, saw you over at the official Star Lords forum ;-)
      (my nickname there is ‘kelsos’).

      Are you german?
      (btw, I’m Austrian ^^ )

      Bye ;-)

      • salvo says:

        German speaking, living in Germany, yet not German :-)

        ciao

        • Harold says:

          ah great! What’s your nationality?

          bye ;-)

        • salvo says:

          hi Harold

          nominally I do have two nationalities, Italian and German, but I prefer considering myself as “Weltbürger” :-)

          now I’m going to start my very first session of star lords

  21. Spookyy says:

    Just got this game, i hope it delivers.

  22. t1it says:

    Game is very polished already and they do have the ambition 4x veterans want – unlike ES.
    For instance the diplomacy and espionage options are fairly in-depth and I think the leader options are also going to get beefy. Just worried by no-ship design (currently) and also lack of resources (just money) at this point.

    I totally love the starmap. It’s like GalCiv 2 (=open ended, no starlanes) except the solar systems actually look like…solar systems and not blobs of round objects randomly orbit the yellow thingies.

    Music is already well done. Great interface so far.
    Overall a VERY good first impression from this alpha build!

  23. salvo says:

    well, no ship customization is planned for now, though as Mike told on the game forum:

    “If lots of people want it and it works well within the game then we will surely consider putting it in.”

    so, whoever wants it should raise a finger :-)

    • Harold says:

      Yeah *raising finger*

      That’s why I love indie developers, they listen to their user base.

    • Smight says:

      add one more vote for ship design.

    • csebal says:

      Good to know this.

      I suddenly became a lot less interested. Even if they add ship design, it will likely just suck. Why? Because if it is sufficiently complex, then you can’t so easily strap it onto an already designed game.. If it can be added that easily however, then it will most probably be so simplistic, that we might be better off without it anyway.

      sad face.

      • t1it says:

        Exactly my thoughts as well.

        • Ashbery76 says:

          Ship design is nice but does not stop it being a good game.Armada,Totalwar and Civ do allright without custom units..

      • Jay says:

        Sounds to me like you are talking out of thin air. Did you even try the game to know whether or not it would work ?

        “If lots of people want it and it works well within the game then we will surely consider putting it in.”

        I think they are pretty clear on this one. I have the alpha and I have no doubt a simple or a complex ship customization option would work great.

      • Again, if we put it in then that’s because it’s fun and adds something to the game. We won’t make a simplistic system just to add to the features list.
        We listen to everyone’s suggestions and since a lot of people want it we are considering it. Given how the game is designed it could probably work, whether it’s a simplistic or a complex system doesn’t change anything. Perhaps we would have to make a few changes, but if those changes improve the game then why not?
        Like I said, nothing is written in stone, if certain design elements can be improved that’s what we are going to do.

  24. Kyle Rees says:

    Just pre-ordered, and unfortunately they have to host on uploading.com due to bandwidth issues. That is the worst hoster, I can’t even find a real download link. I don’t want to download ilivid, or some “probably spyware riddled CleanLab”

    Very disappointed them, awaiting an email reply. =/

    • Kyle Rees says:

      Ok figured it out. Uploading.com does everything it can to hide the real download link so you can install their spyware, that I finally noticed to click “Start Timer” within a window looking thing, which is what you normally want to avoid.

      Please never use these guys in the future.

    • salvo says:

      Hi Kyle,

      I had the same issue, as the uploading site is really confusing. The correct link you have to click is on the left, click on the timer. Just don’t download the ilivid download manager as firefox rates the page as not trustworthy.

    • Sorry about that, sadly we had no other option. We are still looking for a reliable host but so far no luck. The issue is the file is big and eats up a lot of bandwidth. If it was a 50 Mb game it would have been far easier.

      • Evil Azrael says:

        Perhaps you should look in Germany (or Europe in general). Here you can get quality v-servers with unlimited traffic for a few bucks (eg. 1TB@100Mbit/s after that 10Mbit/s, 20GB space for 8€).
        Unscrupulously you can get 5TB/month for six months for free as part of an official test drive order.

        • Thanks you for the tip :)
          We finally found a solution. We are now using a new host, direct link with no ads or waiting for download. Sorry again about the uploading.com issues.

    • Kyle Rees says:

      I wanted to add that the Devs really stepped up on this one and has already added a friendlier option until a permanent one is decided upon. So a big thank you to the devs, I know development time is really important. =)

  25. Thrangar says:

    Will hold for now untill custom ship design is a go
    Also anyone have info on how pirates are implemented?

    • Kyle Rees says:

      I wish I could tell you about the Pirates, but there is a building bug atm for certain machines. I will report back in a few days which is when a fix is possibly coming. =)

  26. t1it says:

    Pirates can own planets in this game:) They are distrustful to the normal civs but I don’t know their relationship to other pirate factions. When they get mad, they may launch an invasion :D

    That’s all I got atm

  27. Gabike says:

    hey guys, any ideas as to the suggested specs for this game? if i m in the clear i ll buy in immediately. ;) thanks a lot!

  28. csebal says:

    Ashbery76:
    Never said it would stop this from being a good game. It will just not be my kind of 4X, that’s all. In fact, not having ship design in a 4X space strategy game always makes me shed some tears. That’s how strongly I feel about the genre.

    Mike:
    Good luck to your game. If you add ship design and if it turns out to be a good one, I will surely be there to pick it up. Thing is, you might be better off focusing on what your game is already good at and enhancing it, instead of trying to water it down with new features. Not that I would not like to see ship design, mind ya, but that is a risky thing to do and you might be doing more harm with it than good. It might ruin the game for those who would like it without ship design, while also not be appealing enough for those who want ship design.

    Think about that before you step on that road.

  29. Viktor says:

    You know, I’ve always believed that I have a “gift” to spot really good games. I don’t go insanely shedding dollars out to every new game without accounting for certain things. There’s something, I don’t know what it is, but as soon as I see a single screenshot of a certain game (any genre), I instantly know how’s gonna turn out. And to be honest, it has happened twice in my life with 4x space games… after seeing the colony management screenshot of Master of Orion 2 and after seeing the screenshot for a capital ship in Sins of a Solar Empire.

    I’ve come to the conclusion that it’s the art, the passion, the love with it is done, the self-less interest in money or grandeur, the interest of pleasing more the end user. I can capture that in the first moment when I see the first screenshot, that first newborn infant of artistic geniuses, of quality delivered by the impulse of satisfying and not of mere profiting. I stepped last weekend and browing the internet and it struck me: Star Lords.

    Guess what? It happened again.

  30. DavePC says:

    What about DRM? What kind of DRM does this game use?

  31. Harold says:

    Alpha 1.2 is out!

  32. DeLastOne says:

    Ordered to support the game studio and the developpement of this game . Like Viktor I am quite feeling this as a game made by passionate people rather than a big studio that will rush stupidly on releasing unpolished game (Legend of pegasus is a good example on where I won’t have put my money at all :))

    The alpha screens and video looks so much promising. Hope to be able to help on the next stages.

  33. Paul Baker says:

    Downloaded the game last night ,looks promising, but,..the game crashes for me after EVERY battle.If anyone has experienced a similar problem and found a solution please post. I will endeavour to find a fix, upside is it loads really quickly so I’m not too disheartened.


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