Sins Of A Solar Empire: Rebellion – Beginner’s Guide

Quick Links

  • Play The Tutorial (Seriously)
  • Start A Small Game
  • Experiment With Options And Victory Conditions
  • Best Faction For Your Playstyle
  • Don’t Over Expand
  • Slow Real Time
  • Fortify Choke Points
  • Mastering Combat
  • Early Game

Sins Of A Solar Empire: Rebellion is a pretty massive game. In terms of scale, it is well and truly galactic, and it’s your job to conquer it in one way or another by guiding your empire across the stars. There is replay value galore, but getting your head around it all can be quite the challenge.

This is partially down to the game’s genre. Sins Of A Solar Empire is part of the legendarily complex 4X genre, which translates to: Explore, Expand, Exploit, and Exterminate. These are the core tenants of the game, and mastering them all will be required if you want your budding empire to rule supreme, or get lost to sands of time.

Play The Tutorial (Seriously)

This might seem like a really obvious thing to do, but let’s be real for a moment, you kind of want to skip it. This is one game you don’t want to rush, however, and skipping the tutorial will lead to inevitable disaster. There is an awful lot that goes into managing planets, empires, and wars.

The tutorial covers just about everything and will set you up for future success. Everything from navigating the complex UI, to building up your economy, to waging interstellar war is touched upon, and you’ll need to know all of it – memorise all of it. You’ll inevitably forget a few things along the way, but going in with a rough idea is better than going in completely blind.

Start A Small Game

When you are given the option to play a game with 50+ planets against countless opposing AI in a randomly generated universe, it’s difficult to say no. I mean, that’s what you bought the game for – the epic scale and battling for an entire galaxy. As a beginner, however, you want to fight that urge.

Sins Of A Solar Empire doesn’t have any kind of story or campaign mode. You have to make custom games and play through randomised maps, or on curated maps. When you are making your first game, keep things small. You want a space to master the mechanics you learned in the tutorial and being bombarded by five AI factions is not the best place to start. Keep it small – medium at most – and refine your skills before moving up.

Experiment With Options And Victory Conditions

Following on from the size of your game, Sins Of A Solar Empire has all kinds of customisation options you can fiddle with to make the perfect session. The most impactful ones on a grand scale are the Victory Conditions. These allow you to toggle how you want the game to end. You can force a totally peaceful game if you really wanted.

In terms of options, you can mess with the game speed, and toggle things like pirates, and super weapons. There is an extensive list of things to play with, and experimenting with everything to see what you like, and what you don’t, is all part of the experience. There is no wrong way to play Sins Of A Solar Empire.

If you want to just jump right in, then use the Quick Start options and it will sort it out for you.

Best Faction For Your Playstyle

There are three core factions in Sins Of A Solar Empire, but with the introduction of "Rebellion", those three factions are divided into two sub-factions. This brings the grand total to six, which is a mighty fine number indeed. What’s more, each of these factions pushes a certain style of play.

Every faction can, more or less, do everything in the game. That being said, if your playstyle is leaning a specific way, then absolutely pick a faction that supports that. For example, if you want to turtle, then the TEC are excellent as they get discounts on some of their defensive structures.

Don’t Over Expand

Despite having “Expand” in the genre title, Sins Of A Solar Empire can quickly spiral out of control if you expand too far too quickly. You may be on the verge of galactic domination, but if you don’t have the resources to develop your empire and cover the costs of burgeoning civilizations, you are going to be in trouble.

Not only that, but defending your territory becomes exponentially more difficult once you have a larger empire. Moving your forces around your space can take a long time, and if an enemy attacks one of your frontier worlds, you might not get into position in time to defend your people before they dip away.

This doesn’t mean turtle, however. Expansion is vital to success, you just want to expand within your means.

Slow Real Time

Sins Of A Solar Empire is a real-time game, but due to the scale of the game and the speed at which it runs, it often feels like a turn-based one. This makes decision making on a large scale incredibly important, but smaller decisions aren’t necessarily time-sensitive (at least when you are not in combat).

By this, we mean that you don’t need to be operating 100+ actions per minute. You can, to an extent, take your time when constructing and researching – just don’t take too long. Failing that, you can even pause the game giving you all the time in the world to ponder away.

Fortify Choke Points

Combat in Sins Of A Solar Empire can be an extraordinarily complex affair as hundreds of ships collide in brutal warfare. Enemies can strike you at any time, but they can’t strike you from anywhere (mostly…). In fact, the game uses travel lanes to restrict your movement between systems.

What this does is create natural choke points that can be used to defend large portions of your empire. You want to rush to these choke points as fast as you can (without overextending of course) and then construct plenty of defences. Heck, it’s also a good idea to keep your military close to these locations too. This way, when your enemies try to invade, they have to get through a bastion of guns, ships, space stations, and missiles.

Mastering Combat

We’ve already touched on combat in Sins Of A Solar Empire, but there is more to cover. Most games in this genre tend to have fairly simplistic – even abstract combat systems. You tell your army where to go and who to fight, and then the AI will take over. Sins Of A Solar Empire is not like this.

Sins Of A Solar Empire rewards micromanagement because every single ship is controllable. Sure, you have fleets with hundreds of ships, but if you want to send a single vessel on an attack run, you better believe you can. This opens up all kinds of tactical options not found anywhere else.

It allows you to deliver crushing flanking manoeuvres, or even give you the opportunity to masterfully encircle your opponent. How about launching a daring assault on a key vessel in the opposing fleet? It’s all here, and you can do it all if you take the time to learn the intricacies of the system. It’s a large-scale game that can be brought down to an individual scale – and that is not only visually impressive but mechanically rich.

Early Game

There is far too much to cover in Sins Of A Solar Empire to give a comprehensive breakdown of the complete early game, however, there are some things you should absolutely do if you want to get a leg up when you start your games. This can be applied in AI skirmishes and online battles.

First things first, you want to get your Capital Ship built as soon as possible. The reason for this is because they are incredibly powerful and your first Capital Ship is FREE. These things are powerful enough to bombard planets, and can even colonise them afterwards. What’s not to like?

Once you have colonised a new planet (ideally with your fancy new Capital Ship), you want to prioritise developing it. Until it has been developed, it will be a giant drain on your resources, making it much harder for you to expand or complete your other tasks. Get them developed ASAP.

Finally, research. Make sure you keep on top of your research as you play, and have a few research stations constructed so you can more effectively gain new technology.

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