And so the Stellaris developer diary run marches on. In today’s latest entry - number 18 - Paradox focus on the good stuff: the shooty-bang-banging equipment you’ll be tacking onto your space vessel as you engage in interstellar warfare.
Excited for Stellaris? Some of our best space games on PC should tide you over until it's here.
While the chat of abductions, subspecies and fallen empires that recently crept out of the Stellaris camp is infinitely intriguing, knowing what hardware we’ll be using to conquer the solar system, to me, is just as exciting. I’m a cretan, what can I say?
The latest diary explains that while weapon stats vary, all weapons can be gathered into five groupings: energy, projectiles (kinetic), missiles, point-defenses and strike craft. Strike crafts stand apart from other weapon types as they are in fact smaller ships dispensed from their mothership and fighters and bombers make up the roster of crafts at this stage. The former will be able to fire upon ships, missiles and other strike craft; while the latter won't, but will do more damage against capital ships.
Point-defense weapons are able to spot and shoot down incoming missiles, and can also damage hostile ships within range - even if they struggle to deal significant damage.
As for the rest, the diary explains: “One type of energy-weapon is the laser, using focused beams to penetrate the armor of a target dealing a medium amount of damage. Mass Drivers and Autocannons are both projectile-weapons with high damage output and fast attack-speed, but quite low armor-penetration.
“This makes them ideal for chewing through shields and unarmored ships quickly, but are far worse against heavily armored targets. Missiles weapons are space-to-space missiles armed with nuclear warheads. Missiles have excellent range, but they are vulnerable to interception by point-defense systems. There’s of course far more weapons in the game than these mentioned, but it should give you a notion of what to expect.”
Defense-wise (pah, offense in the best form of defence, right?) a host of armour and shield components are your discretion, most which work as an extra health bar, some of which regenerate. The most important thing to note when forced onto the back foot is that once combat kicks off, it’s pretty hard to retreat.
An “Emergency FTL Jump” option can be relied upon as a full-retreat last resort, however once engaged you won’t be able to fire back at hostiles as you attempt to scramble to the nearest system. Good luck with that.
Still no release date as yet, but Stellaris is shaping up to be a very interesting game indeed.