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Stellaris Pyxis update reworks leaders for a smoother experience

The Stellaris Pyxis update arrives with patch 3.10 alongside the Astral Planes DLC, and simplifies leaders alongside other related systems.

Stellaris is, for my money, the crown jewel of Paradox’s outstanding library of grand strategy games. There’s not much grander than the vast expanses of outer space, after all. It’s important to keep things manageable, however, and so, following on from changes made in the 3.8 Gemini update, the new Stellaris Pyxis update arriving with patch 3.10 consolidates leaders, simplifying the options at your disposal to better integrate the way they work.

The Stellaris 3.10 update is set to arrive alongside the next big DLC, with the Stellaris Astral Planes release date set for Thursday November 16. Whether you’re buying into the new, “reality-breaking” expansion or not, the Pyxis update brings some very welcome changes, overhauling the way leaders work in one of Steam’s best grand strategy games.

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Your leaders became more integral to the function of your empire with the introduction of the Stellaris Gemini update in patch 3.8, and developer Paradox has been hard at work reimagining the various leader roles to better fit the new setup. The result is that the overarching leader classes have been stripped back from five to just three, with several related systems and mechanics also tweaked to suit the new-look roles.

Gone are Admirals and Generals; now the Commander stands in their place as the singular military-focused leader. The former pair instead act as veteran classes for the Commander, alongside the Commissioner and Strategist. Governors and Envoys have been merged together to give us Stellaris’s new administrative leader, the Official. Scientists, meanwhile, remain as the third pillar.

Your empire’s leader caps are now per-class, and having too many of one type will only apply penalties to that particular segment. Along with this redesign, Paradox says it’s rebalanced or replaced hundreds of leader traits, noting, “Many have changed significantly, and the overall power level has generally been decreased.”

Stellaris Pyxis update - Screenshot showing the new leader limits with patch 3.10.

With Governors gone, all leader classes now have the ability to govern planets and sectors, with each specializing in a different area. Officials make the best generalists, governing resource extraction and industry. Commanders are ideal for managing recently conquered worlds, or those with high levels of disruption and crime. Scientists can lead your research worlds, replacing the science ship’s ‘assist research’ ability with their own bonuses.

There’s now the option for Officials to be assigned as Federation Representatives and Galactic Community Emissaries, replacing the old function of Envoys. In accordance with the above changes, there’s also plenty of rebalancing for civics, council legitimacy, tradition trees, and ascension perks. All in all it’s a very robust update, and already sounds like it should smooth out the process of employing your leaders effectively.

Stellaris patch 3.10, known as the Pyxis update, releases for free Thursday November 16 on Steam, alongside the paid Astral Planes expansion. You can find Stellaris and all its additional content packs on Steam. You can also play it for free if you’re a subscriber to Microsoft’s PC Game Pass service.

If you’re feeling overwhelmed by all the options at your disposal, we’ve got a guide to the best Stellaris DLC. If, conversely, you wish you had even more options at your fingertips, we’ve also got you covered with the best Stellaris mods to evolve your next campaign even further.

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