The “Other” Game

Stellaris is the other video game I play on occasion. Without the use of my main medication, I was limited over the past week in what writing I could do; I am getting back to working, but slowly. In the rest of my spare time, when I was not playing in EU IV or preparing for the Rozal game (game mechanics being something I can work on without my medicine), I was playing Stellaris with my wife.

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The green-ish blob on the right is my wife’s country (it does not extend all the ; blue is mine.

In our game, she is playing robots (for the first time), and I am playing a hive mind (and oh, how I wish we could do robots that did not have to be hive minds.) We both have a tendency to expand to cut other powers off from sections of space, and later come back to them when we have the spare Influence (the rarest of the normal resources, used in claiming or conquering systems.) Because of the space piracy mechanic that causes enemy raiders to spawn more frequently when you have pockets of unclaimed space around your empire, this is a calculated risk, but in this game it is paying off.

Unlike Europa Universalis IV, Stellaris’ strongest time (for me, at least), is the opening and mid-game. EU IV is a great game, but I find it hard to get into a session. Stellaris, on the other hand, I can get into quite easily, perhaps because it is different every time. On the other hand, EU IV’s late game feels (at least for me) less tedious, despite the fact that there are more different places to control in EU IV (provinces in that game outnumber stars in Stellaris by at least two to one.) I am hoping the upcoming update will make the planetary maintenance less tedious, which will speed up the late game, though I worry the early game will suffer… we will see before too long.

Anyway, I know I have been disappointed in how poorly I have managed to keep posting during this difficult time of medication rationing, though I know I should not be surprised: before the medication I was out of, I got very little non-game-mechanical writing done. Still, for what it is worth, my apologies.

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