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Endless Space Review

Endless Space is a strategy game that brings forth a unique feeling of immersion and customization that can make people disappear for hours on end. Right now, strategy game fans have Warlock and Civ V to play. With Endless Space in their library, good luck doing anything productive. With solid programming and clever game design Endless Space proves to be one of the best pure strategy games I have played.

There are many reasons that make Endless Space addicting. The biggest aspect is the rich content in terms of a story and brilliant gameplay. No two games will play out the same and variety is the spice of life right? The game is 100% player driven. Right off the bat you can change the win conditions and starting point of your race. While the game has eight different races to play as, you can still create your own custom faction. With this many choices it is no wonder you get sucked in.

The best thing I can do to explain the tech tree is by comparing it to Civilization’s. With Civilization, the tech tree is very linear and everything leads to one another finally coming to a single point where you need to have everything to get the final technology. Endless Space’s tech tree is NOTHING like that. It is a spider web of technologies in four different categories. This is where you begin to realize the gravity of your choices. Once you begin to specialize in something, you realize you are neglecting something else. Sure you can have a top notch military with a huge population. But you then realize your planet is running out of resources and you are unable to efficiently colonize other planets.

The main problem with games that contain this much content, is the overwhelming chaotic mess that is menus within menus. Surprisingly enough, the game is incredibly organized and very balanced. As you play, your choices begin to define what your race is known for. With the default races available there are archetypes for anything. You can feel like the bugs in Starship Troopers and be a massive military force that can colonize any planet you wish because of your power and numbers. You can also go a diplomatic approach and appear to not pose a threat and you can make friends with everyone. Every game is different and no two galaxies you play in will be the same.

Gamers have always played that game where it was “just one more level”. While this idea seems to have been long since gone due to many games hitting the lazy train, Endless Space reinvigorates this idea. You want to build, “just one more ship” or “colonize one more planet”. Then when you look at the clock and 4 hours have passed and you missed your carpool to work.

Interactivity is important, that is what makes a video game an enjoyable experience. Yes, there are space battle with your fleets. However, they are not as expansive and epic as you would think. Think of it like blitzball in Final Fantasy X-2. You essentially act like a coach dishing orders to your players while the computer calculates the success rate. The fleet battles can last anywhere from 30 seconds to two minutes. The reasoning for this is to keep multiplayer fluent and not drone on. While managing your fleet should never be neglected, it is just a way to keep a game flowing.

Endless Space does not have the visual quality or looks like Civilization or Warlock does, but in a way, that is the appeal. The game is very well done and is a refreshing look at the 4X space strategy title such as Master of Orion. This is a game worth getting. I give Endless Space a 9/10.

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