Starsector (formerly "Starfarer") is a game that I've followed for quite a few years now, one I personally purchased many years ago and the latest release is a big one.
I've tested it at various points over the years, always coming away impressed by the visual design just as much as the gameplay. The spaceship design really is quite incredible.
Thankfully, the issues that plagued the Linux version (for me) in the past are gone. Multi-monitor support has vastly improved, with it not messing with my secondary monitor and going fullscreen correctly on my primary monitor. That alone, is a big deal for me and it's so much nicer.
It's not really a game to play on a coffee break, there's quite a bit of depth to it and quite a bit to learn. It's worth it though, because it's absolutely fantastic. After trying it some more since the latest version, I was blown away by how engrossing it is now. There's so much about the game to love, starting off with nothing as you build up your fleet and empire while exploring the galaxy. The combat is absolutely my favourite part though, being able to take direct control of ships and get into the action while it's hot is awesome. I love that you can transfer your command to another ship, but you have to wait for your little transport shuttle to make it over during combat—very cool.
After taking on a few small pirate fleets, I managed to salvage a few ships that weren't completely destroyed and turn them into fully armed and operational warships. A feature I was pretty pleased to see in the game, even if my fleet was utterly annihilated an hour later by a much bigger enemy fleet before I had a chance to expand my forces any further.
What's new in this release?
- Establish colonies! Build up industrial production to make a profit, improve your colonies, and protect them from many dangers
- Visit a portside bar to find missions and other opportunities
- Fight alongside – or against – massive orbital stations
- Create your own faction and set up its military doctrine
- Find blueprints and use them to let your colonies produce ships, weapons, and fighters
- Face enemy ships with dynamically generated weapon loadouts
- Discover new dangers and derelicts on the fringes of the Sector
- Explore planetary ruins
- Raid core worlds for plunder or to disrupt your competition
You can pick up a copy direct from the official site. I absolutely recommend picking it up, brilliant fun. I'm going to be playing it a lot more now for sure.