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Explore strange new worlds
Fans of Master of Orion or Alpha Centauri are going to want to add this one to their collection. It's an add-on to a cracking experience that is a similarly themed science fiction strategy game which is so well designed and implemented that it can keep you going for years. The base game puts you in the role of the Earth leader in the far future and charges you with leading humanity out into the stars. It's up to you to research new technology, to plan resource gathering, manage the economy and the military, while engaging in all sorts of complex political and trading matters. This expansion pack broadens the narrative, by introducing new alien species and building a new campaign, with ten missions, around them. The Altarians are the principal species but there are two others which feature heavily, while there are also some new ships and maps to boost the appeal. If you are a follower of the original game, then this is probably going to be of interest to you. There's not a whole lot of extra content on offer, but what's here is all pretty decent. The new races do a good job of building the universe and making it feel more alive, while the campaign is interesting and challenging, with some good missions to try out. Everything else is business as usual, with the same familiar interface, graphics and systems, but they remain as well implemented as in the original. If you haven't played that and are interested in getting into the genre, it's a great one to start with, so head there first and then move up to this.
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