Stellaris: Overlord is out now, adding vassals and new megastructures

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Stellaris‘s Overlord expansion is out now, jamming the vast scifi grand strategy game even fuller with megastructures, story events and – as is Paradox’s wont – more vassals. Overlord aims to offer more control over your empires, both to let you shape them in more specific ways and also to generate more anecdotes when it all goes wrong.

As always, the expansion also releasing alongside a new free patch with balance fixes and bux fixes for all.

Here’s the launch trailer for Overlord:

Overlord lets you create “specialist empires” by negotiating (or demanding) contracts between your vassals, so you can tailor worlds towards economic, military or technological progress. Vassals have their own interests, however, and so will turn on you and find a new empire to follow if you don’t keep them on side.

There are five new origins to use as starting points for your empire, and new enclaves to encounter, both of which increase the number of stories the game can tell. Finally, there are three new megastructures. These are hard-to-build structures that give you tactical advantages – faster travel, longer range attacks – but more importantly, they also look very cool. I don’t know what building an orbital ring around a planet does, but I know from looking at it that I want to do it.

Paradox split Stellaris development responsibilities in two a couple of years ago, with a new “Custodian” team formed to focus on balance and bug fixes outside of the expansion release schedule. This team is responsible for the free-to-all 3.4.2 “Cepheus” update, also released today. The update – or updates, technically – mostly include the kinds of changes that will only mean anything to you if you’re a regular player of Stellaris already, but you can find the full patch notes here if you want to check whether your biggest bugbear has been fixed.

Stellaris: Overlord is out now and costs £15.50/€20 via Steam. The base game is also currently 80% reduced on Steam to £7/€8.

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