Mixed or average reviews - based on 26 Critics What's this?

User Score

Mixed or average reviews- based on 387 Ratings

Your Score
0 out of 10
Rate this:
  • 10
  • 9
  • 8
  • 7
  • 6
  • 5
  • 4
  • 3
  • 2
  • 1
  • 0
  • 0
  • Summary: In StarDrive, you will design your own race to lead into the stars. You will find new worlds to colonize and conquer, meet strange aliens to trade with or war upon, and implement strategies to promote trade within and growth of your interstellar empire. Expand your military forces by researching new technologies and ship designs. And, when provoked by alien warmongering or the urge to conquer, lead your customized fleets and ships into pulse-pounding battles for supremacy of the galaxy. Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 4 out of 26
  2. Negative: 2 out of 26
  1. 80
    In short, Stardrive is the best descendant/clone of Master of Orion 2. Its theme and mood might be derived more from the Star Trek school, but the philosophy that runs through its spine is, undoubtedly, from the amazing Microprose title, the king of the 4x genre of the nineties- along with a pinch of Galactic Civilizations and Sins. [June 2013]
  2. May 10, 2013
    Even with its foibles, StarDrive is a rare treat for those with the fortitude to marshal past its rough spots; invest the time it takes to understand, and the galaxy has a lot to offer.
  3. May 28, 2013
    If you’re a fan of RTS and strategy games, you can get a few good evenings out of StarDrive, just don’t expect the endless addiction and spotless interface of Civilization.
  4. May 6, 2013
    A number of features aim for the stars (sorry) but don’t always reach the target. So if you’re risk averse and want to settle into something mainstream, you’d best look elsewhere as you’re likely to see the rough edges instead of the potential for growth.
  5. Jun 8, 2013
    It looks like StarDrive isn't completely finished at this time. The game is addictive and can keep you busy for hours and hours. Despite that, StarDrive lacks some features to really shine. If Zer0 Sum Games manages to fix these flaws, StarDrive can become a star in the sky.
  6. May 14, 2013
    StarDrive is a collection of solid ideas and features waiting to be unified by the necessary finishing touches.
  7. May 8, 2013
    Beyond the technical problems — which are significant — in its current state, StarDrive is a collection of neat systems and cool ideas that fail to form a cohesive game.

See all 26 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Negative: 48 out of 205
  1. Apr 26, 2013
    I've been keeping my eye on this game for very long time. Reading about it, everything sounded too good to be true, so when I started the game for the 1st time I had very big expectations. Despite my expectations the game managed to surprise me very pleasantly. I've been longing for this type of game for years (endless space and galciv and sins and sots aren't exactly my cup of tea) and I'm very excited it has arrived. Not only that but the game looks graphically stunning.
    All of my friends who saw me playing it, bought it the next day.

    A perfect heir to the crown of Master of Orion.
  2. Dec 23, 2013
    It is truly unbelievable what one man can achieve. The game is addictive right from start, well presented and is a lot of fun to play. There are still a few glitches and some potential for improvement, but Zero is putting amazing effort into this project releasing improvments almost on a daily basis. If you like 4x games, you have to grab this one! Expand
  3. Apr 26, 2013
    Awesome Space RTS game with a lot of (working!) great ideas and concepts. It's the first game since SoasE, which fascinated me enough, to play it more than 80 hours. But it has to be mentioned, that Stardrive is updated every few days and has reached release status just today(!) Moreover the communication and feedback between programers and community is extremely good! :)

    What I liked the most about Stardrive, besides the typical game play things like RTS and 4X elements, are the innovative new concepts for ship designing and fleet battles. It is possible to build all kind of ships, with a loadout, that I know from SciFi movies, games and books. (But not the look I'm sure, there will be graphic mods soon)
    - ST Federation Ships: Strong Shields, 360°Phasors and Torpedos
    - ST Klingon Ships: Fast Birds of Prey with strong forward disruptors
    - Star Wars: Star Destroyers with strong 360° slow firing plasma weapons (relying on fighter crafts to engange small crafts)
    - BSG: Carrier Ships with many fighter crafts (loadout can be individual, too), strong armor and close range point defense guns
    - Stargate: Atlantis style star bases with shield/armor ignoring projectiles.
    - Freelancer: Galaxy wide warp-enhancing "autobahn" network buildable similar to the jump gates routes in the game.

    Other cool features:
    - Ships need a lot of power generators or power cells to fly with FTL speed. (My first designed ship could only warp 3 seconds and fell out of FTL! ^_^)
    - Boarding parties can caputure/defend ships
    - EMP and energy depleting weapons
    - Repair and resupply modules to assist other ships
    - Warp Speed inside of Solar Systems can be limited/disabled in the game options, making planetary and orbital defenses more effective
    - Weapon angles can be adjusted manually, which makes broadside attacks possible
    - "TAB"-key shows volatile subsytems and weaknesses of all ships, making precision attacks with fighters possible.
    - cute Owlwoks :)

    Negative points, that prevented me from giving 10 points :
    - Language localization is not available at the moment.
    - Cloaking devices are missing. :(
    - It is possible to conquer well defended planets with 10-15 ground troops. Planetary shields, orbital defense stations or fleets don't prevent invasion troops from landing.
    - Ships can fly around in the whole galaxy from the beginning. No outposts, supply bases or technologies are needed, to extend the ship range.

    Stardrive is definetly one of the few gems in my huge collection of mostly average Space RTS and 4X games. Ad unlike some other games in the last years, Stardrive didn't let me down. (Yes, I'm directly looking at you, Legend of P...!)
  4. Apr 29, 2013
    Very deep game with descent difficulty though I imagine as I improve the game will fall onto the easy side of things. I'm really looking forward to MP as the possibilities there are amazing.

    Its got a somewhat steep learning curve and it does require a bit of micromanagement so be prepared for that. But managing everything is part of the fun. If you just want a game you can jump into and start blowing things up its probably not for you.

    If you have a mind for strategy and want to wrap your brain around matches that take days to finish then its more up your alley.
  5. Apr 29, 2013
    This is the best 4x game since Master of Orion II. That being said, Moo2 still sits upon the throne.

    StarDrive is a worthy heir.
    Obviously a labor of love, this indie gem was developed by a small crew with very little money behind them, and the result is a perfectly gorgeous 4x game. It feels like this is what master of Orion 3 was trying to be.

    The RTS aspect is engaging, but you can also pause to fine-tune your build queues. The universe is an exciting place to explore you can find artifacts that permanently improve your racial abilities, and even make first-contact with an industrial-level civilization. Like any good 4x game, a variety of strategies will lead you to victory. The artwork is gorgeous.

    One thing I appreciate about the design is that the game remains challenging throughout. As your empire grows and absorbs other empires, alien races do the same, usually remaining at roughly the same size as yours. Also, in MOO2, at a certain level of technology, a single player designed ship could easily massacre 10 computer-designed ships of the same tech level. Not so in StarDrive.

    The game is deeply engaging, and once you've mastered the controls (which, by the way, the game doesn't help you with. They are not intuitive.) it's immensely fun to play.

    In some ways, it might be easiest to describe where the game falls short:

    -The User Interface, as other reviewers have noted, can feel desperately clunky at times. It seems the designers could've taken a few cues from RTS games that get it right. The most obvious example would be using Starcraft's "ctrl-click" to select all ships of one type in the vicinity.

    Another example, you can tell a freighter to "Trade Production" meaning it will collect production from planets you told to export, and deliver it to planets you've told to import. But there doesn't seem to be a way to tell the the ship to "go to earth, pick up 15 production, and deliver it to Venus." If the AI decides it would rather take the production to another "importing" planet 15 light years away, there doesn't seem to be a way to tell it otherwise.

    -Diplomacy is simultaneously better and worse than other 4x's. Better because you have the option of folding a friendly empire into a federation with your own. This makes it feel like your relationship may be going somewhere, as opposed to forestalling the inevitable war. Worse, because it seems that a lot of fairly basic diplomacy options have been overlooked. (Really? I can't trade energy credits with another empire?)

    -Lovers of Master of Orion will have to adjust to allowing large amounts of automation to keep their empire going. The universe is expansive, and you simply can't keep track of thousands of ships and hundreds of colonies in the end game.

    -The graphics are missing some BASIC, KEY options. How about some lower-polygon models? reduced effects? Thank goodness my video card allows me to deactivate anti-aliasing for the application, because you sure can't do it in-game. I bought this laptop 2 months ago, and its fairly high-powered. I run Starcraft with max video options, Planetside 2 with medium. Until I figured out how to adjust the display through my video card, this game was starting to look like a slideshow.

    -The tech tree is not very deep. For instance, no matter how much you research, once you've put lasers and shields on your fighter craft, they will never improve for the rest of the game, because there are no other energy weapons, engines, or shields small enough to fit on them. In fact, often times it seems like you've got all this room to load cool devices on your brand new ship hull, but not a lot of cool devices to fill up all that space with...

    All in all, a very worthy effort. I'm glad I purchased it, and I will spend many, many hours on this one. I'm also glad I got it at a discount, because I feel like it comes up a little bit short of true greatness. Unless they spend a little more time fixing these issues, in 10 years, people will still be comparing 4x games to MOO2, not this one.
  6. saz
    Apr 28, 2013
    I'm a big fan of 4x games. It's impressive there's only one person on the project. Sadly, you can tell. It needs more cooks in the kitchen. In it's current state, it's more of a fringe game. Most players will find the UI frustrating and incomplete. Many features like a scroll out button or hotkeys to take you to your home planet are just missing. I wasn't interested in building custom ships and there is a bad gap for included ship designs. If you research a new tech, you'll have to create a design to use it.He's doing an in service to his game and to those purchasing it, by keeping it all the work and inspiration in house. These games really need big teams. Hopefully not that it's gone retail, he can add some staff. Expand
  7. Jan 10, 2014
    This is an updated review of stardrive. I originally did a review in april 2013 and said, like many others, that this game had alot of potential. What happened is, the developer took the money and ran and never completed the game.

    This means the promises made to people who paid $25 like me were never fulfilled. Worse, the end game is unplayable because of crippling memory problems.

    Never ever buy a zerosum game or anything related to this developer again. He should be shunned and banished from game making forever.

See all 205 User Reviews