Stellaris grand strategy space game by Paradox discussy thingy thready thingy


A lot of 4x/Space Empire games (in particular the fun Distant Worlds) are great simulations but not really very good games in my opinion. Stellaris is (to me) actively fun because you are manually controlling fleets and issuing orders, making meaningful choices and reacting to new information, but the key is not during combat - that is just for fun space pr0n time, and your decision making in terms of combat comes prior to combat when designing ships and fleet composition.

The active exploration of the early Stellaris game remains my favorite thing in a 4x/Space Empire game. I hope the next expansion focuses on combat mechanics though, I’d love to see that blown open like factions have been.


I agree that I’d like to see them focus on combat (and movement/interception of fleets). I like the changes to factions, though I still think they don’t pack enough punch. During the development of Stellaris, many of us thought that holding together a large empire would be a real challenge. Either you large empire is wracked by civil war, or it has to devote a great deal of time and resources to keeping the internal peace. It doesn’t seem to work out that way in Stellaris. I still think that would be an awesome idea, and the most natural way to balance tall versus wide gameplay.


It’s certainly its strongest aspect, I’ll give it that. And maybe the rest will be as good after the 125th DLC. We’ll have to wait and see.


I think my request was misunderstood. I’m not looking for canned strategies but basic info on how to play the game and general tips. The tutorials so far seem really thin.

For example, what can or should I be doing with the influence points I’m generating. I’ve got a lot of them now and I have no idea if I should be spending them on something or just hoarding them for some use that might become apparent later.

To give another example, at some point I got a message from my neighbor asking for a trade deal. I misclicked and cleared the message bubble and then could not find any place in the GUI where I could see the offer and respond. Was left clicking on the message the only possible way to do it?

I’m just looking for basic info, not a step by step guide on how to work some particular strategy.


Oh, a manual. I don’t think they make those any more :)


Minerals are really important early game and can be a big bottleneck to your expansion. So build mining stations on any that you find in your early systems.

I always build a second science ship pretty quickly and start looking for mineral rich systems and potentially colonizable planets.You will always get 2 other nearby colonizable planets in addition to your home system. Often they already are in your controlled space.

You can separate your starting fleet into 1 ship task forces, set them to evasive and then just go and recon in expanding circles for habitable planets. You might lose one though if you enter a system and are too close to hostiles but in general you can scout out a large area around your home system to help prioritize where you send your science ships.

Use the influence to build outposts to stake claims on areas that you don’t want your neighbors getting to first.

You can also spend them on edicts to help you out in specific science areas if your research points have become unbalance.

Make sure you keep an eye on your researchers ages and when they will reach then end of their lifespans. You want to have influence points available to replace them.

Make sure you have a decent home fleet 7+ corvettes by the time the age of piracy kicks off…usually in 2205 or so depending on when you get your first colony out. Not sure what the trigger is but you will want to be able to respond quickly so you don’t lose a mining station or two. There are also some early game events that can trigger which require you have a decent home fleet.

If you get an advanced ai start neighbor or a xenophobic militarist neighbor prepare for war early.You might not be interested in war at that stage but it will be interested in you.

The more planets and pops you have the more your technology cards will cost so you need to balance expansion.

Colonizing a planet costs a lot of energy so make sure you have 250+ stored up if you don’t have a very large monthly income.

Don’t be afraid to keep playing if disaster strikes. I’ve pulled myself out of some deep holes. Also done some stupid things and salvaged the situation with luck and miracles as well as crashed and burned. It’s all part of the fun.


Lots of fantastic tips there. You go girl!


Here is my version.

  1. Disband starting armies and save energy
  2. Check science leaders, got any better?
  3. Growth is important, get those techs
  4. While minerals are cool, a 2 mineral deposit costs 1 energy, this gets expensive fast…and will slow you down. Look for 3 or more in the beginning.

5 you can speed up research early with edicts, but you may need that influence for colonizing.
6. Diplomatic worries, guaranteeing someone makes them like you, do it before they rival you.

Good luck.


Have you checked the Stellaris Wiki? It has a beginners guide:'s_guide

I’m planning on jumping back in after not playing for a long while, so I also appreciate the tips @Vic_Davis


I briefly jumped back into this with some multiplayer this weekend, which made me try some single player as well. I guess I’ll have to pick up the Leviathan pack… those merchants stations that lets you trade energy and minerals are super handy.


Yep. I’m in a game where I was just about to rebel against my Awakened FE benevolent overlord and the Scourge showed up on my border. I was able to trade enough energy for minerals to be build up enough to repulse the initial probes into my territory. My overlord FE is also fighting along side me with his 300k fleet. I don’t know what would have happened if he wasn’t there. Game over I would bet. Still don’t know how I am going to win this though. The scourge fleets are endless and there are at least 10+ 100k fleets just on my front that I can see with active sensor agreements. The far side of the scourge is chewing up the other end of the galaxy and the AI idiots on the far north side are still fighting each other in futile wars. Pretty awesome game.


Picked up Utopia in the summer sale, and found some mods that cater to my weird preference for playing space 4x games that lets me play on 10k star maps combined with sub-light travel that means it takes years for my ships to travel to even the nearest star.


Report back in 1000 hours with how the first war went.

Seriously though, that sounds interesting do you have a link for these mods? I am guessing that research speeds and other things are stretched too?


Man, I’d love that game if the mod almost meant one in fifty star systems had a colonisable planet, and Stellaris didn’t slow to a crawl on my (admittedly ageing) i3.

The game makes in my view the same kind of mistake Fallout 4 made - it doesn’t give you the time nor the space to breathe and feel like you’re in a huge universe. Empty space isn’t necessarily wasted space, and Stellaris makes space too small both in terms of travel time and physical distance. There’s also a bit too much busy work and UI niggles, and I’ve never gelled with the research in it.

Massively better (particularly with Utopia) than at launch, but I haven’t seen anything to suggest that they’re changing the game to alleviate the concerns of people like me who feel that the game was fundamentally broken at launch in terms of game design.


Not worried about having wars any time soon - I’m just after a chill experience where I hang out and slowly develop my small empire. But I want this to be against the backdrop of space just being absolutely massive and difficult to traverse. Even the closest stars should be hard to get to - not just somewhere I can pop over and have a cup of tea before heading home for dinner.

I haven’t found any really decent blanket slow research mods that are up to date. I am trying Rebalanced Research Penalties that increases penalties with extra colonies.

For sub-FTL speeds there is Slower Than Light This isn’t perfect either as it just increases your windup time at the edge of your system by several hundred days. The modder has talked about a possible workaround to this so hopefully this is updated.

For huge galaxies I’m using Epic Galaxies


That’s interesting, thanks.

Sometimes I wonder if the better way to simulate this is to always play on 1 speed and to mod the time/date references in the game so that each click is one month of time instead of one day. Would that work or is that still too fast?


Funny you should mention that because I only ever play EU4 on speed 1, mainly so I can just leisurely click around all the different sub-systems without worrying about stopping and starting all the time. But that slows everything down - the real impact of slow space travel is everything else moving at normal speed but just with vast gulfs of space between.

One game that does this well is Distant Worlds (especially if you start on a 15x15 map with scattered clusters). I’ve played that to death however and now I’m just looking forward to DW2.


Any ETA on DW2?


It exists and is being worked on - that’s the only thing that has been confirmed.


New DD: Naked corvettes rebalanced away plus missile speed and retargetting.

These sound like good changes, though apparently the big “anti-doomstack” naval changes won’t be in the next update.

I’m looking forward to improved tech mattering more, though apparently the went the route of mostly decreasing the incremental costs of new equipment, rather than increasing the incremental performance boosts.