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Stardock Game News

Fantasy 4X strategy game, Fallen Enchantress: Legendary Heroes gets major update

Published on Friday, May 10, 2019 By Frogboy In Elemental News

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Stardock released a major update to its classic fantasy strategy game, Fallen Enchantress: Legendary Heroes today.  The new version incorporates many months of fixes, performance optimizations, AI enhancements, balance tweaks and a host of other improvements.

"We are really happy to finally be able to get this update out to the fan community," said Brad Wardell, CEO of Stardock Entertainment. "We've been making improvements to the game for many months and been waiting until it reached a critical mass of updates to get it out there."

The game takes place on Stardock's fantasy world of Elemental.  In it, players start a kingdom from the a single leader and must contend with other civilizations who are looking to take control of the world.  Players research technology, design their own units, build cities, fight wars, go on quests, engage in diplomacy all while trying to unite the world under their rule.

Version 2.5 is available from the game's home page at www.elementalgame.com as well as on Steam and GOG.

It's available on Steam and GOG for $24.99.

Screenshots:

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Stardock Releases Earth Rising - Part 2: Return of the Lexites for Star Control: Origins

Published on Wednesday, May 8, 2019 By Tatiora In Star Control News

Stardock Releases Earth Rising - Part 2: Return of the Lexites
for Star Control: Origins

Get the Earth Rising Expansion Now
Play Part 1: Aftermath & Part 2: Return of the Lexites today!

Stardock released Part 2 of its expansion to the new Star Control game today. In it, players will finally come face to face with the very beings who inspired the formation of Star Control in the first place -- the Lexites. Earth Rising - Part 2: Return of the Lexites introduces players to the post-singularity species called the Lexites whose mysterious motives to stop Earth’s expansion into the galaxy will require all the player's efforts.

Set in the late 21st century, the player is the Captain of Earth's first interstellar starship with the mission to explore the galaxy,  find allies to help protect Earth from hostile aliens and find the resources necessary to help Earth begin to expand to the stars.


The expansion pack, Earth Rising, is being released in 4 parts. It adds a host of new aliens, ships, adventures and destinations to the already rich universe introduced in Star Control: Origins. Because Star Control is a non-linear action/RPG game, the new content does not require the player to have already completed the main story arc from the base game.

Highlights in Return of the Lexites include:

 

  • Lexites - The Post-Humans who left Earth decades ago are back!
  • New Missions - A series of missions dealing with Earth's expansion into the galaxy as well as missions involving your command crew.
  • New Ships - Battle against new, fully-armed Lexite ships. Earn rewards from quests in order to unlock and purchase ships.
  • New Weapons - Take on new challenges as you face enemies with weapons you’ve never seen before.

Get the Earth Rising Expansion Now
Check out the features and quests in Part 1: Aftermath here!

Star Control: Origins

More is on the way!
Following Return of the Lexites, two more parts will release. Purchasing the Earth Rising expansion will
give access to each part as they become available.

Part 1: Aftermath (Now Available)  |  Part 2: Return of the Lexites (Now Available)

Part 3: The Syndicate (Summer 2019)  |  Part 4: Earth Rises (Fall 2019)

 

Star Control: Origins is available for $29.99 on Steam, GOG, or www.starcontrol.com

Siege of Centauri: Beta Update 5

Published on Tuesday, May 7, 2019 By Derek Paxton In Siege of Centauri Dev Journals

*** RELEASED 05/16/2019 ***

Thank you all for your feedback. We are listening and have made some significant changes to the game based on it. Most notably we redid the entire game progression to be smoother. That requires redoing all the maps so we couldn't release new missions as they wouldn't fit in with the old system.

The big change is that we will no longer tie unlocks to score. Instead new towers and orbital abilities will be unlocked by completing missions. This offers us a few advantages.

Features

  • New Progression System- Tower/orbital unlocks are no longer tied to score. Instead they are unlocked by completing missions. Because  of this unlocked tower/orbital popups will no longer interrupt game play and we can have more score variety (it was difficult to balance people unlocking towers in time if someone got a lot less points than a another player because they were playing on a lower difficulty level).
  • Chronoshift- This replaces the pause mechanic. Pausing now puts the game into "bullet-time" or "matrix" mode where the player can slow down the action to make decisions. But this is a limited resource to keep the pressure on game play. On easier difficult levels we are generous with the time given, but on higher difficulty levels it will be tougher.
  • Outposts- Some maps have Outposts. These are buildings with no military value, but they give a big score bonus if they survive the mission. It's up to you if you want to spend resources defending them or not.
  • New Mission: Dule. A large map with multiple choke points and a defensible colony, and hard to defend outposts.
  • New Mission: Ascent. A mountain with the colony on top and winding paths going higher and higher until they reach the top.

Balance

  • There are now 9 difficulty levels.
    • Trainee- -90% Score, +60% tower damages, +100 metal,/n Infinite Chronoshift
      Beginner- -75% Score, +50% tower damage, +50 metal,/n Chronoshift depletes 75% slower
      Novice- -50% Score, +40% tower damage,/n Chronoshift depletes 50% slower
      Easy- -25% Score, +20% tower damage
      Normal- No Score Modifier, Normal hit points
      Challenging- +25% Score, +30% enemy hit points
      Hard- +50% Score, +60% enemy hit points,/n Chronoshift replenishes 50% slower
      Unyielding- +75% Score, +100% enemy hit points,/n Chronoshift replenishes 75% slower
      Nightmare- +100% Score, +150% enemy hit points,/n Chronoshift never replenishes
  • Decoy no longer lasts forever.
  • Increased the cost of drone bays.
  • Rail Gun delay between firing increased slightly.

UI

  • Minimaps give an audio and visual queue whenever a new wave starts, telling you exactly where they are coming from.
  • Buildings with hit points (metal refineries, fission reactors, etc) now show their hit points when selected.
  • Towers and orbitals now have a highlight ring if they are available.
  • UI Animates when a mission starts.
  • New splash screens images, new campaign screen image.
  • Replaced all the unit and tower selection images.
  • New/updated sfx.

Fixes

  • Fixed an issue where a tower can stick to a lower tier unit when there is a better target in range.
  • Fixed an issue where Scarabs couldn't attack.
  • Fixed an issue where Punishers smoked when undamaged instead of when they were damaged.

Siege of Centauri: Epicurus at Night

Published on Tuesday, April 30, 2019 By Derek Paxton In Siege of Centauri Dev Journals

Epicurus has already suffered an assault. The colonists set off a bomb that destroyed the invaders, and killed themselves as well.

The colony is already on fire when we arrive and won't survive any sort of assault. It's going to be a long night.

On the positive side, the colonists rigged energy cells here to explode. Just clicking on them will detonate them and damage all surrounding enemies. And we have long passes leading to the colony that offer a wide variety of places for defenses. Be careful just building around your colony though, it is already close to falling.

The invaders have failed here once. Their next assault will test us.

As if that wasn't enough, this mission features a new enemy. The Gliding Crane, an air transport that must be shot down before it reaches its destination. If you don't it will drop enemies close to your colony.

Community Newsletter #1 - 04/26/2019

Published on Friday, April 26, 2019 By SchismNavigator In Stardock Community Newsletter

Welcome to the inaugural edition of the new Stardock Community Newsletter!

Today we will be going over some of the things happening in the community including game updates and events being run, as well as sitting down to talk with a crazy active mod maker.

This edition is separated into three sections (Horizon, The Forge, Uplink) but future editions shall include an additional section with an update on topics from the previous edition.

 

The Horizon

Community news and upcoming events

Siege of Centauri Roadmap

This month we have been busy, really busy, like so busy that we think we left the stove on but there is no time to go and check so here is hoping nothing has burned down. Why so busy?

Siege of Centauri went into early access this last week!

Leading up to release we have been very fortunate to have amazing feedback from select alpha playtesters and our founders. The game would not have launched as well as it did without their invaluable input. Thank you guys and please keep sending us your feedback!

Now that the game has been out for nearly two weeks are finally getting to implement some of the initial wave of feedback from the wider group of players who have come along for the ride of early access on Steam.

Some, but certainly not all, of the updates on the horizon (callback) can be read about in a Steam news post from Brad. Personally speaking, I can not wait to see what you guys think of the new pausing mechanic, build grid system and new turrets which are coming soon.

If you are a streamer or YouTuber and are interested in Siege of Centauri get in contact either here on our forums or on our Discord server.

 

Sins Mega Mod Mashup

With so many different mods for Sins there it was only a matter of time someone would try something like this. One of the mod makers and streamers in the Sins of a Solar Empire Community is taking it upon themselves to work on a new mashup mod. This is primarily being directed by their community but it is not too late to follow and perhaps help influence the direction it takes.

The goal is to include various models and ideas from the disparate mods, with the various creators' permission, to create a unique mashup mod.

Here is the first video in the series.

 

Ashes of the Singularity 3.0 In Dev

Yes, work on 3.0 for Ashes of the Singularity: Escalation has begun. It is still a little early on and we do not have an official announcement for what will eventually be included, some of which will depend on Siege of Centauri. However, Brad himself has begun with some fixes and adjustments with the v2.79 opt-in build now available on Steam.

You can read some more about some of the changes included in this next patch here. You can provide feedback on the changes on the forums or on Discord.

 

OTC Casuals Tournament

Trattpingvin from the Offworld Trading Company community discord server has been doing some great work recently running different tournaments. The latest one is scheduled to start this Saturday (27th April) and is aimed at the more casual player.

The top prize is a Steam game worth up to €20 with three runner ups winning a Conspicuous Consumption DLC steam key each.

More details are available here.

 

_______________________________________________________

The Forge

Showcase of a single creator and/or creation

Airmaster

Every day we are amazed by the creative and passionate people who not content to merely play video games, one of life's best pursuits but change them, create with them and often finding new and inventive ways to break them.

Today we want to shout out to one of the oldest and most prolific creators in the Galactic Civilizations community.

With well over 800 items on the Steam Workshop for Galactic Civilizations III it is easy to see why Airmaster is one of the most recognizable names for people who love to load up on custom races, ships and have a blast roleplaying in GC3.

Whilst he is known for recreating popular science-fiction ships and races I am going to highlight Airmaster's original work.

The Terran Sovereignty is a custom civilization complete with some thirty-six new ships. This range from the fast and nimble Tiger II through to the torpedo titan Colossus.

Anyone with Galactic Civilizations III can explore this collection for themselves by following the link to Airmaster steam workshop here.

 

_______________________________________________________

The Uplink

Uplink is the guest portion of the newsletter where we sit down and talk with someone from the community itself. We find out who they are, what they are all about and why you should like, fav and subscribe to them on YouTube, or something like that.

#1 - Sundered Echo

For our inaugural edition, we sat down and spoke with Sundered Echo (AKA Sovereign Echo), a mod maker from the Sins of a Solar Empire community who has been creating a bit of a stir amongst many of the longest running mods. Not many people who only casually follow the modding scene might know about this guy yet but he has been doing some interesting things behind the scenes and so we thought we would sit down and ask them about it.

Listen to the full interview here.

 

Transcript (Abridged)

Schism Navigator (SN): Today I am sitting down to talk with Sundered Echo, one of the modders in our Sins of a Solar Empire community. To start with the most simple question which is going to put you immediately on the spot: Tell us about yourself.

Sundered Echo (SE): In terms of my participation in the Sins modding community I am the lead coder in the Dawn of the Reapers mod, which is focused around Mass Effect. I am also a coder on Ages of the Federation, an upcoming Star Trek mod.

SN: I remember someone say you might be involved in something else as well.

SE: We have some secret projects at Prolific Studios and sometimes I help out Sins of the Prophets the Halo mod.

SN: A little birdy told me you have been really, really active with the Sins modding community recently. Up until 6 months ago I don't think anyone had necessarily even heard of you.

SE: That is correct. I think it was around July last year that I started seriously modding Sins.

SN: That leads to our next question, what attracted you to Sins in the first place.

SE: That's going way back. I remember the original Sins in a box on a shelf. I was very young and I'm very fond of sci-fi and ships. The combination therein is the best thing ever as far as I am concerned. I remember getting it in a boxed copy and staring at it longingly but I did not get it that day the parents wallet was not opening.

SN: Obviously you've been playing Sins long before becoming a modder. Are there any other games that motivate and inspires you as a creator?

SE: I have a very long list of games on Steam, as well as some on Origin as that's the only way to get Mass Effect. Obviously I am a big fan of Mass Effect, all of them, maybe not so much Andromeda. I also enjoy at the moment Battlefleet Gothic Armada II. Once again spaceships and big capital combat.

SN: I can see a pattern.

SE: Been getting back into World of Warships, Stellaris. I would be absolutely remiss if I didn't mention Homeworld.

SN: Some degree of pride being a big Homeworld fan myself. The studio that made Homeworld Cataclysm split and Ironclad were actually one of the three studios that came from that team. So some of the people who made Homeworld Cataclysm also were the minds behind Sins of a Solar Empire. It's a small world.

SE: Indeed.

SN: So was there anything in particular that drew you into modding?

SE: Well there is actually a very particular thing. I had been watching the Dawn of the Reapers mod since the beginning of the mod. Eagerly anticipating it for a long time. I believe it was version 0.4 I downloaded and I looked at all the descriptions' and thought; wow they really need to work on this, this is not very good. And so I thought to myself "I can do this better, this can't be that hard." So I did up a massively overly fancy application, reading up on strings and modding Sins. I sent this application to Lord Set the founder of the mod and I joined at first to do nothing but strings, which is the descriptions of units and things in the game.

SN: A million tooltips basically.

SE: Yeah, but then... You're gonna get a small history lesson. We were active for a little while but then Set decided he had to focus on some real life things and disappeared somewhat. And then around about before July last year he reappeared out of the blue and I had actually just been considering quitting. He contacted me and asked if I wanted to start up again but I wanted to make sure he wouldn't disappear again. We realised we had lost a lot of the original team that included people who did code. Set hated doing code so I asked if I could do it. He pointed me towards the tools and from there it was experimentation.

SN: Was there anyone you got tips from, learning from guides or tools others had made?

SE: It's a little bit intimidating actually and I think it's gotten a little bit better over the last few months. Mostly I figured it out on my own but it was primarily because of the wonderful tools that Zombierus or Zombies-R-Us made. It was mostly looking at existing code and reverse-engineering it from there.

SN: With all that in mind. What advice would you give to other people coming into modding?

SE: I am a firm believer that experimentation is the best way to learn. We have an in-joke that if we haven't managed to break Sins we aren't pushing it hard enough. I try to dream all of the features and push it just until it breaks and then dial it back. Do not be afraid to experiment.

SN: Yes, everyone please break our game!

SE: It can be a big commitment of time and the reason I am able to work on so many mods as I am is because I don't have much else consuming my time. Definitely don't try to join several mods at once like I have!

SN: It's a lot of experience.

SE: It's quite rewarding actually. A joy to create. But you should definitely ask the veterans as much as possible. We look scary but generally we're not. And I have found especially in recent years or months people seem a lot more willing to share what they've done. Especially if you give them credit!

SN: That is something I've noticed not just with Sins. One of the things is there are the best people who are in those communities it's important to them that people cite credit. Most people are cool with others using their code or models so long as they are properly credited. Some of the biggest mods you have assets that were made many years ago still being used and reused.

SE: Another thing to remember is that new ideas might seem silly but it's important to try new things. One of the things veterans told me is I came in without the long term history of modding Sins. So I have new ideas and try to break it in new and interesting ways. Even if you think your idea is silly, go with it anyway, test it because it might work. I must say though that the support that Blair and the guys continue to provide to this game. They don't have to keep supporting us but they do and they keep adding features for modders and that's excellent I am very thankful for that.

SN: I think there is real value in that longterm support and we do take a measure of pride in that at Stardock with all of our titles. Like we even got an update with GalCiv 2 last year. Old games never really die, never truly die. So wrapping it up, where can people find you and what are you working on?

SE: The primary way to get in touch with me would be on the Dawn of the Reapers discord, the Sins of A Solar Empire discord or the Stellar Parallax discord. I generally am pretty friendly and try to answer people who come to me with questions.

SN: Hopefully a lot more questions now.

SE: Oh no, what have I done?

Siege of Centauri: The Ravines of Gallehault

Published on Tuesday, April 23, 2019 By Derek Paxton In Siege of Centauri Dev Journals

We released a new mission today, Gallehault. Gallehault is massive and combines a wide variety of threats, from a wide variety of directions. In Gallehault you will face massive swarms, air assaults, cruisers, healers, face units rushing your colony and waves targeting other sites.

Gallehault starts you with two metal refineries and a fission reactor. But it's large map is going to make it difficult to defend all of them (I've never been able to defeat Gallehault with sacrificing at least two of them). It's fair to say that every mission so far has been training for this one.

Lots of paths means lots of ways that enemies can attack. Spoiler: on Thursday we are planning on releasing an update which shows the path for selected units which is helpful on maps like this (you can check out the details of that update here: https://forums.stardock.net/494618/page/1/#3747442).

Some paths are heavily used, some are rarely used, but they cannot be ignored and allow a enemy wave to sneak up on your colony.

Deciding what to defend, when and where to use your orbitals will be the key to success. Overspend on one area and it's almost certain death.

Though Gallehault has a lot of paths, it also features a number of choke points that are fun to build death traps in. Just remember that not all enemies will go through this choke point.

The swarms on Gallehault are larger than any mission so far. Fortunately the long ravines give you a lot of time to whittle them down, or to pick a point to make a stand against them.

I can't offer a single strategy to defeat Gallehault. Each way brings a new threat. Watch your minimap well, remember that you can mouse over the unit icon in the wave panel to see what direction future waves will come from. And when all else fails, Milton is a great last resort.

Good luck!

Siege of Centauri: Going North

Published on Thursday, April 18, 2019 By Derek Paxton In Siege of Centauri Dev Journals

We unlocked a new mission today, Chariah. Chariah is a remote location, cold with winding paths through the mountains. It is the biggest map in the campaign so far (larger ones will come later) and offers long paths with plenty of great points to place defenses (as well as an enemy that is going to ignore those roads entirely, but we will get to that later.

We have a Fission Reactor and a Metal Refinery here, on separate paths. And an ideal junction between the paths to place defenses, but building defenses there will mean abandoning either of the two buildings. We can build in the north, defend our source of radioactives but assume that the towers won't protect against southern attackers, or do the opposite and guard the refinery. Abandon both and make the most of our defenses by guarding the colony, or try some mix of the above.

Personally I love radioactives and my orbital abilities so I quickly build up defenses around the Fission Reactor and use Milton to help out.

Which 

Which is when the first of our first two new enemies shows up. Sparrows are tiny flying enemies that ignore the paths, but they come in large groups. Flak Cannons are the best defense against them since they do AoE damage against flyers. But in a pinch Icarus Missiles and even Gun Turrets can hold them off.

Later in the mission more powerful flying Punishers attack and will need more than Flak cannons to stop them. But there is an objectives (and a score bonus) if none of them manage to reach the colony).

Flying enemies ignore paths, but you can see where they will go with Scan Mode. You enter scan mode by holding down the ALt key. It will let you more clearly see units (by desaturating the terrain) show you HP bars for enemies and let you see the lanes Air units will travel on.

(spoiler: in a future update any unit you click on will have their full path displayed so you can see where they will go).

Chariah is also one of our longest levels so far with 11 waves. And ends with dual waves of Martyr's from both directions. By this point I have given up the more remote locations and I'm attempting to hold them at the last gate before they reach my colony.

Fortunately the last are killed and the colony is saved, even if I wasn't able to save the reactor or the refinery.

Chariah is up and able to to be played now. What do you think? Would you like larger, longer maps, or do you prefer the shorter missions like the earlier missions?

Siege of Centauri: Defending Malden

Published on Wednesday, April 17, 2019 By Derek Paxton In Siege of Centauri Dev Journals

Malden is the third mission of the Siege of Centauri campaign. It is the first mission to feature multiple entrances and a fission reactor that provides radioactives to power our orbital abilities.

So right from the start I have to consider where my enemies will be coming from, and how to defend two positions.

Mousing over the enemy icon in the wave panel shows me where that enemy will be coming from. In this case, this Reaper swarm is coming from the east. Good, that's nowhere near my Fission Reactor, so I can focus on defending my Colony without worrying about losing those sweet, sweet, radioactives.

I expect to kill a lot of enemies around my Colony, so I put a Scavenger Module there and a nearby Arc Projector. The Scavenger Module converts any enemy killed within its radius into metal that I can use to build more towers. I also put a Gun Turret along the path just to whittle enemies down a bit on their way to me. Gun Turrets are cheap, and I hate to waste good positions on them, but this remote part of the path seems perfect.

Since I only had enough metal for one real damage-dealing tower, I'm going to need some help when these Reapers get to my Colony, so I deploy Milton. He isn't permanent, but with his double chainguns and a backpack full of missiles, he deals lots of damage in a hurry (and makes my Scavenger Module very happy).

Meanwhile, the western path up by my Fission Reactor has its own problems. The metal from Milton's destruction comes in handy and I'm able to drop some towers that are better suited for dealing with the more hardy Destructors and Corrupted Healers. Two Plasma Cannons and a Corrosive Mortar help, but I also need to drop some reinforcements to keep them from wiping out the fairly fragile Fission Reactor.

The Fission Reactor does have some minor drone defenders of its own, but they won't survive long against a sustained assault from Destructors. I am able to defend the Reactor, so I will have more radioactives to play with for the rest of the mission.

Designer thought: I should really make it so that a Fission Reactor explodes when destroyed, damaging everything around it.

But metal spent defending the Reactor was not spent defending the Colony, and soon I have a rush of very fast Masochists trying to destroy it. A web of Arc Projectors eventually destroys them, but my Colony takes some damage in the process.

A larger wave of Reapers attacks my Colony from both sides. They seem to be ignoring my reactor for the time and focusing on my colony.

But the bonus radioactives allow me to deploy Milton again and fulfill one of the mission's secondary objectives of killing 100 enemies with Milton, which isn't too hard against the large swarm.

Which leaves one wave left. A Clutch of Eggs that has considerable defenses and decides to go toe to toe with Milton.

I drop another Plasma Cannon and Corrosive Mortar to help Milton out, the Clutch of Eggs is destroyed, and the Colony is saved.

How would you beat this mission?

 

Ashes of the Singularity is getting bigger

Published on Wednesday, April 17, 2019 By Frogboy In Ashes Dev Journals

Next month will mark the third anniversary of the original release of Ashes of the Singularity!

It's amazing how much things have changed since then.  I was looking at screenshots and gameplay video and the game has come so far from its first release.

This first image is from Ashes of the Singularity v1.0:

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And here is what today's opt-in update looks like.

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The first thing tto notice is how much bigger the buildings and units are. 

Here's a screenshot that shows it off better

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We still have more work to do as the sizes are going to create some pathing and formation bugs which you will see for yourself if you try out the opt-in.  But the increased size makes the battles a lot more interesting and helps communicate the interactions between units much better.

Steam Early Access is Now Available for Siege of Centauri!

Published on Tuesday, April 16, 2019 By Tatiora In Siege of Centauri News

Earth's first colony is under attack by an unknown enemy

Siege of Centauri puts you in command of the defense of Earth's first interstellar colony.  Thousands of alien machines are descending on the helpless colony and only you, with your arsenal of fast-deployed orbital defense structures (FODS), can stop them.

Early Access starts today on
Steam or at www.siegeofcentauri.com for just $9.99

The enemy comes in all shapes and sizes, challenging you to counter them with the right defense in the right place. Siege of Centauri combines the best elements of classic tower defense games with the strategic depth Stardock has delivered in past titles, including Sins of a Solar Empire: Rebellion and Ashes of the Singularity.

Battle across the surface of an alien world through a series of story-driven campaigns or fight for survival in a doomed region to see how your skills match up against thousands of other players across the world.

Siege of Centauri
Siege of Centauri
Siege of Centauri
Siege of Centauri

 

Visit www.siegeofcentauri.com for more information.

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