Stellaris might do well with a slow-FTL period

Content of the article: "Stellaris might do well with a slow-FTL period"

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Out of a growing frustration with the complete lack of games that even depict slower than light (STL) travel, the idea of its depiction in Stellaris has slowly stewed within me, I suppose culminating in this post.

Sure, STL isn't completely ignored, but it's never really much of a focus either; in Rimworld it acts as a central point of the lore while in Distant Worlds Universe it features a pre-warp stage where players can send a STL craft to another star (although this is more a happy consequence of game mechanics than an intended feature.) The only game I've found that explicitly focuses on STL at this point is Seedship, a text-based adventure that requires the player to guide 1000 cryogenically frozen humans to their new home. In addition to this, Kerbal Space Program could also be considered a STL focused game with the use of heavy modding.

Back on the topic of Stellaris, I am aware there were STL and pre-warp mods in the past; In fact I've played with them. However, 1) these mods are long since been abandoned and 2) these mods I feel don't grasp the full potential of the concept.

Read more:  The Ultimate Mod


Now, stl travel that takes numerous decades doesn't work all too well with the time frame of a stellaris game, so allow me to propose a compromise of slow FTL.

With this in mind, imagine, a large-ish period of slow FTL exploration and colonization, where craft can take up to a year to travel interstellar distances (not that long considering fleet movement from one side of your empire to another can take a year in a normal game). Now, as a result of these immense travel times, colonies might decide on a more… autonomous approach to government. The stage is now set for the early game, your empire and the numerous breakaways all contend for a small section of space, some 30 or 40 stars, waging war with periodic waves of early and cheap corvettes mixed in with transport fleets. Perhaps the homeworld overcomes its dissident children, or perhaps the breakaway bombs their homeworld back to the stone age, their own ideals reiging supreme.

Read more:  Fixing the pacifist ethic.

I hope this instills in you, reader, the same fascination with a slower paced and more turbulent setting that STL and slow FTL provide. Maybe its a cool thought, or maybe I'm just a wierdo, be sure to let me know either way!


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