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Star Lords “Alpha” Now Available on Steam Early Access

By on December 11th, 2013 9:08 am

Star Lords | Turn-based Space 4X Strategy Game by Arkavi Studios

Star Lords, a turn-based space 4X strategy game currently under development by Arkavi Studios, is now available as “Alpha” on Steam Early Access for anyone willing to enter into the game early and contribute with feedback for overall game improvement.

I had a look at the game about a year ago. By the time I thought that the game definitely had potential, so I included it in our “Sci-Fi/Space Games You Can’t Miss in 2013” list. A more simple approach, which is not necessarily a bad thing. A very playable but still very unpolished game. I definitely felt a good vibe from classic 4X titles, chiefly from its interesting turn-based tactical combat system, a rare feature to find these days.

Regarding past backers, Arkavi Studios says in their forums that “all the (Steam) keys have been sent” to all Early Backers, and that if you pre-ordered the game in the past and didn’t get yours you just need to shoot them an email.

Expect a first impressions piece on this Steam’s alpha build soon. Now, the Early Access teaser trailer.

Here’s the first trailer, which shows off a few bits of the gameplay.

Star Lords “Alpha” (game not finished yet) is available early for the PC on Steam’s Early Access Program for $19.99/€18.99/£14.99. Remember that this is still a work in progress game, so you may want to have a look at the game’s forums on Steam to check what other people are saying about the game’s current state. For more information check out the Star Lords official website.

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  1. DevildogFF says:

    It’s actually pretty good.

    They fix the UI, flesh out the AI and fully implement the current features and they may actually have the best 4X game of the recent lot of them.

    Please don’t screw this up, guys….

  2. Chuki792 says:

    So despite misgivings, I posted a comment with some questions to the devs, basically asking them to sell me the game in its current state and got a quick response, which was nice and convinced me to pre-purchase (you can find it on the steam forums for the game, posting as “12_monkeys”).

    Now, as I’ve said before pre-purchases are a thing of the past for me but then again, I’ve currently got spare funds and time (office has broken up for Christmas! :) ) and I’m not playing anything seriously at the mo so thought £14.99 ($20??) was a fair price to pay – If its crap and goes the way of StarDrive, then i’ve lost £15 which here in the UK is about the cost of 3 McDonalds meals, something I can live with for the chance at checking out the game and helping to steer development in the right directoin. (FYI if thats the case this really is my last pre-purchase!!!!)

    I’ve played less than 2 hours so far (rediculously slow Steam DL’s recently, finished about 23:00 and I’ve got work at 08:15!!) so i wont go into much, i’ve not even tried the combat yet but the feeling I got was pretty good about the rest of the game.
    It needs some optimisation; i’m running an i3 2100, with a GTX550ti and 8gb ram, win 64 and it was unbelievably choppy. On the main window, running with a ‘Large’ galaxy was barely playable when zoomed out to the max, I had to play zoomed pretty close in (about 3 star systems visible at one time) to get a playable frame rate, and thats when things aren’t even moving on the screen, although I will forgive since its an alpha.

    Colony management is fairly simple on the face of it, you get a pop-up screen showing the build queue and general planetary info (income, tax, upkeep, pop. happiness, resource harvesting -‘none’, ‘normal’, ‘overharvesting’- á lá Sots II, the latter of which determines how many factories you can build before you start eating into the planets fixed resource levels).

    Ship design, from the little i’ve played is fairly straightforward, you get a list of available components that can be added to the selected hull, and notifications of missing essential parts i.e. – “ship must have an engine” in red text. Then once these are added, you can decide on weapon loadouts (currently only one can be added but according to the response to my question on the Steam forums, this wil change) armour (standard or re-enforced or whatever you’ve researched at the time)

    I did find it a little odd that you can select a medium sized hull, max out weapons and armour and it will cost you about 580bc, whereas a capital (larger) hull with only a colony module (you can only put colony mods on capitals) costs about 650bc… not sure if thats what they meant since i’d expect a colony ship to be cheaper than a frigate, just like a real life stenna line passenger cruise ship is much cheaper than a real life Royal Navy frigate, complete with armour, arms and ordnance!

    There are misisters and generals, i believe to automate colony and fleet management and apply bonuses, although I dont think they’re implemented yet, the buttons dont show anything but could be because i’ve not unlocked them yet.

    Ship styles seems pretty cool also, but you cant change the hull shape/design, pretty much like space enpires / MoO2/ Endless Space – Each race has a specific aesthetic style for each class of ship.

    Diplomacy is something i’ve not touched yet and overall as i said, i’ve played about 2 hours so not a lot to go on. I’ll update here once I’ve had a good session – the Mrs is off to Kung-Fu training tonight so will get a good few hours and report back with my updated *alpha* impressions.

    N.B. Dont hesitate to ask me any questions here if you’re considering a pre-purchase yourself, or even on the steam forums, the Devs seem to be pretty active over there.

  3. Keith Turner says:

    What intrigues me the most about this particular game is the political and diplomatic aspects. I’ve not played it myself, but based on what I’ve seen and read, it seems like these are a couple areas where Star Lords could set itself apart.

  4. Ty Page says:

    I see a little Shivan influence in the Star Lord ship

  5. Dudester says:

    I don’t want to be a prat, but wasn’t the fact that Elite Dangerous launched their Alpha 11hrs ago worthy news for this site.

    • Jeff P says:

      I’m sure Adam or Keith will get to it. We are getting a lot of sci fi titles popping up recently, so it is no surprise if one is missed at first. Thanks for the info!

    • Adam Solo says:

      Thanks for the news Dudester :)

      It’s hard to keep track of everything, especially at the moment when there’s so much going on.

      You seem quite keen on space sims, perhaps you could help us keep track of news and even write your own pieces here? If you do shoot me an email.


    • csebal says:

      Checked out the videos and I must say I’m a little sad to see another great title go down the drain. Thats not Elite, thats some sort of weird space airplane simulator, with spaceships flying like if they would be flying through air.

      Those dogfight scenes from the capital ship video did look positively stupid.

      I will still keep an eye on the game, but I am definitely a lot less interested in the title now, than I was a year ago.

  6. Chuki792 says:

    I have to say I am pleasantly surprised by this title, already has a lot in it and i finally got to try out some small battles. Its pretty neat, the graphics are decent and the effects are simple but servicable, plus the Devs say the combat isn’t complete yet so it will get better.

    Espionage is currently my favourite feature at the moment. It feels like its complete, with lots of varied missions (love the ‘steal funds’ mission, if succesful can net you a decent sum of cash; I regularly stole between 500 and 800BC – while my economy was only generating 27BC/turn) though i suspect this requires more balancing.
    Also, your agents can be captured while on mission,and either imprisoned then released or executed, which in turn gives you a ‘Cassus Belli’ or justification for acts of war against them (you can attack without a penalty to your reputation), for those times when you want to start a war to take that ultra rich system from those alien zealots , and just need a reason (clearly modelled on US foreign policy :p – Oooh, he went there!)

    Overall, I believe the game is solid in its current form and if it continues development in the vein the devs have promised, could finally be the MoO successor we’ve been waiting for since like forever!

    There are still crashes, and said crashes often corrupt the autosave prior to the crash. I’m enjoying the game so much but feel i need to leave it for a while in case i burn out before the next patch /release

    As ever though, time will tell if this one lives up to its potential.

  7. True_poser says:

    Regarding combat, at the moment it’s pretty simple.
    The battlefield is small, it is divided on hexagons, and currently all you can do is to move your ships and do pew-pew.
    Looks like non-combat ships in a fleet are drawn to the battle too.

    I had troubles in using diplomacy.
    Even if I used a race with high “likeability”, most races were indifferent.
    For instance, I could strike a free trade deal only if I paid some thousands of BC for it.

    Trade concept was strange for me.
    I couldn’t figure out, how to develop my colonies for trade.
    Having an established trade route did nothing to me.

    Overall I never was able to really get playing the game at this stage because it is crashing regularly on my machine and somehow autosaves get… strange.
    Well, I’ll wait for next releases.

    Though I doubt it’ll be a MOO successor.
    It has much more an Endless Space vibe, not the MOO2 clockwork.

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