– It builds on everything that worked in the base
game and then adds features that make it a must play
Score – 4 out of 5 stars
Last year I had a look at a really interesting strategy game about starting the first ever colony on Mars. Just in its name, Surviving Mars, it told you just how hard it would be to build and sustain life on a hostile planet. You could set up a colony only to sit there and watch it die because you accidentally set up a negative feedback loop. But while this can be devastating, the game is always there tempting you to try again, and when you succeed there is so much joy in that moment. While I enjoyed my time in Surviving Mars, it did feel like it had yet to reach its full potential. Well, today we are going to look at the newest expansion Green Planet to see if this helps to fill in the gaps in the base game with copious amounts of Martian concrete.
So to set the scene, you are the commander for the first colony being sent to the red planet. When you arrive Mars is a bleak, hostile, but also a deeply beautiful place. It is a planet filled with promise but also death. You need to build up resources, construct domes to protect your people, provide oxygen and water, and keep it safe from all the disasters that can strike. However, while surviving is fine, there is a next step that you could take. Because what if we can shape Mars to be friendlier, what if we could turn it into a green planet?
TL;DR – Stepping into the storied world of 4x, Stellaris takes us into space and taps into that love of exploration among the stars … or just conquering everything you see, with deep systems that give you the kind of customisation that you need in a empire building game.
Score – 4 out of 5 stars
Strategy games are my jam, I love building up an empire, mining all the minerals, spawning all the Overlords, launching all the nukes. As well as this, I am a huge sci-fi fan, so when you add a strategy game, to a space setting like Sins of a Solar Empire, Birth of the Federation, or Space Empires 3, well then you are on to a winner. However, while I had picked up Stellaris back when it first came out it didn’t quite gel with me but recently I took another shot at it with the Utopia and Distant Stars DLC and found that ‘one more turn’ grove. So now that I have played a couple of games of it, including some multiplayer, I have a better idea of the game and feel confident in my review.
TL;DR – As a game it is a really interesting puzzle to get right, mimicking real life in some ways, but it would be good to take it a step further.
Score – 3.5 out of 5 stars
When it comes to settings for films, TV, books, or games nothing is an easier sell for me than setting something on Mars. Whether it is your Red Mars trilogy, your Total Recall, your The Martian, whatever it may be, I am just engrossed with our red neighbour floating out in the void. So with this in mind, we are looking at a game today that simulates what it would be like potentially to create a colony on the red planet and well be prepared going in that you probably going to kill your colony a couple of times.