Endless Space

Game review by
Chad Sapieha, Common Sense Media
Endless Space Game Poster Image
Tough, fresh strategy game is like Civilization in space.

Parents say

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Kids say

age 11+
Based on 3 reviews

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this game.

Educational Value

Kids can learn about strategy, exploration, and civilizations in this sci-fi-themed tactical simulation game that allows players to pursue a variety of different victory paths. Players discover how the development of compelling new technologies can change the balance of power between rival factions. They see how healthy cultures depend on a multitude of interconnected economic, industrial, environmental, and philosophical elements. Endless Space's turn-based-civilization building can act as a good learning supplement for kids interested in strategy and social systems. 

Positive Messages

This turn-based game rewards thoughtful players who consider all available options and plan ahead. It encourages kids to use their imagination, thinking about different scenarios as they plot a path to a victory that may or may not involve much military force.

Positive Role Models & Representations

Players never see individual characters in the game, but they do become familiar with various alien species and human factions that can be good, neutral or evil in their ambitions. Some groups are highly aggressive and merciless, carving a path of destruction across the galaxy, while others are benevolent and prefer technological and diplomatic solutions. 

Ease of Play

This is an extremely challenging game that will put the skills of even veteran strategy gamers to the test. A comprehensive tutorial walks players through virtually every facet of the experience, but the game lacks many of the hand-holding features of its bigger-budgeted competitors. It will take some time before most players feel completely comfortable.

Violence

Players have no direct control over the game's space battles, which show large cruisers firing at each other and blowing up from a distance. The game does not show any combatants -- human or alien -- injured or killed. However, the death of crews is implied.

Sex
Language
Consumerism
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Endless Space is a downloadable strategy game for Windows computers with a small amount of space-based sci-fi violence. Some of the game's species are evil in nature and interested only in conquest; but the player can also try to win the game through means of diplomacy, expansion, or technology. There is little here that might possibly offend younger audiences (most of the game is spent looking at maps and stats), but it is a very challenging play best suited for older kids in possession of some patience and tenacity. Parents will also want to note that this game supports open text communication between players in its online multiplayer mode.

User Reviews

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There aren't any reviews yet. Be the first to review this title.

Teen, 16 years old Written by555123 July 10, 2013

Proper Gamers' Review

Endless Space is an unique and great experience which patient gamers and casual players will enjoy. The multiplayer highlights the gameplay. This game can be pl... Continue reading
Kid, 12 years old May 26, 2013

"I'd play this over Master Of Orion 2 any day"

If you've played Master Of Orion 2, Civilization or SMAC/SMAX then this will be very similar to you. It's a very well done 4X strategy game and for a... Continue reading

What's it about?

ENDLESS SPACE is an independently developed turn-based strategy game with a structure similar to games in Sid Meier's Civilization series. Players choose one of several alien species or human factions (you can also create your own), then start off on a home planet in a huge galaxy with an aim to explore the universe, expand borders by colonizing new worlds, exploit resources, and, if necessary, exterminate opposing species. Each turn allows players to select new projects for all of the planets and ships under their control, using new technologies to grow their output of industry and science and become more efficient, all while attempting to keep a happy population. Players can work toward many different kinds of victories, ranging from conquest to technological supremacy. This game is unusual in that it was and continues to be designed with input from its community. Players have the opportunity to view all of the game's design materials, make suggestions in public forums, and take part in votes that affect aspects of the game, from visual aesthetic to nitty-gritty decisions regarding rules.

Is it any good?

Strategy-loving gamers who go in with proper expectations will likely find Endless Space a minor delight. It isn't as polished and accessible as bigger-budgeted entries in the genre, but it still offers a satisfyingly multifaceted and relentlessly challenging experience. It provides a broad range of parameter-altering options that will ensure no two games play out the same way. The delicate process of growing an empire one star system and one technology at a time is an intellectual pleasure. And the game's fledgling sci-fi mythology, which includes everything from cloned races to ancient robotic civilizations, is tantalizing stuff. 

There are some problems that need to be ironed out via game updates. Diplomacy is a little underdeveloped at the moment (options to work out deals with hostile races are limited), and deciphering the effects of choices made during the game's space battles can be tricky (players pre-select tactics for short, long, and medium range prior to combat, but without a clear picture of what these tactics will accomplish). Hopefully these problems will prove merely growing pains, because Endless Space is a delightful new entry in the woefully underrepresented genre of turn-based tactics games.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about strategic thinking. This game encourages players to plan ahead and predict outcomes. What sort of real-world activities do you participate in that require you to think strategically?

  • Families can also discuss online safety. What precautions do you take when chatting with other players in online games?

Game details

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