Sins of a Solar Empire: Rebellion is one of my favorite RTS games of this year, a perfect example of how to reinvigorate and overhaul an aging game. Now Stardock and Ironclad Games have released a major patch, v1.1, which includes a ton of gameplay tweaks and over 40 new maps.
One notable aspect of the new patch, aside from the avalanche of new maps, is the fact that so many of the maps are for competitive play, meaning that they have standardized resources and militia forces so that nobody can be hamstrung by a bad starting location.
There are also a slew of balance changes, especially regarding corvettes, a ship class that had trouble finding its place in the release version of Rebellion. Now they are set up as counters to the Titan-class super ships, so that there are ways to engage enemy Titans without having a starbase or a Titan of your own.
The emphasis on competition in this patch is intriguing, however. I can’t imagine Sins ever taking a run at building an eSports audience, due to the sheer length of the average Sins game. But the emphasis on map balance and creating a competition-ready map list does suggest that Sins multiplayer is becoming a more serious, demanding scene.