About Armada 2525
Armada 2525 was an early example of the space opera genre, released by Interstel in 1991. It was by the standards of the genre fast to play, had a rich tech tree, and worked very well as a 2 player hot-seat game.
Although well received, it was released just as the publisher was going bankrupt, so it never became widely popular.
Armada 2526 is its spiritual successor, and replicates and builds on its strengths in an up to date game.
Check out the Supernova expansion here
Armada 2526 continues the great tradition of space opera games. You guide your race from its first interstellar journeys. until it becomes a mighty galactic empire. Along the way, you'll explore the galaxy, conduct research, diplomacy and trade, found new colonies, maneuver mighty star fleets, and fight epic battles.
Although the game is complex, and the possible strategies endless, powerful help and advisor features, help you get up to speed quickly. Unlike many games in this genre, Armada 2526 focuses on providing a game that can be finished in a reasonable time, and emphasizes battle and strategy over economic micro-management.
It will be available for PC running Windows 7, Vista or XP
Turn Based Strategy Map
The strategy map shows the portion of the galaxy where the game takes place. Here you'll maneuver your fleets, manage your colonies, and grow your empire. The emphasis in this part of the game is thinking and planning, so you can spend as much time as you want planning your strategies, and issuing orders. When you're done, hit the "end turn" button, and your orders will be carried out simultaneously with those of other players.
Epic Space Battles
Battles can be epic affairs with more than a hundred ships on each side. They are presented to the player in their full majesty via real-time 3D rendering with glowing energy beams, shimmering shields, and spectacular explosions. The action is real-time, both to enhance the visual spectacle, and to introduce elements of tension and pressure; however, the emphasis is firmly on tactics and maneuvering formations, rather than frantic clicking on individual ships, and you always have the option of pausing the game to issue orders.
Planetary assaults are especially intense with ship to ships battles, grounds battles and ground to air battles all taking place simultaneously. If the attacker doesn't complete the conquest quickly enough, the battle will continue into the next turn, giving each side the chance to throw in reinforcements.
Supports Large Universes and Many Players
Space is big, really big, and conceivably contains many sentient races and nations. Armada 2526 has been designed to cope with a large number of A.I. players, and to handle a large enough area of space to accommodate them.
This means you'll continually be finding new allies or trading partners, and always wondering if there's some powerful unknown enemy lurking just beyond the next star system, making for long lasting truly epic games.
However, the standard scenario is a rather smaller and can be finished in a reasonable amount of time, but with 12 different races, still offers plenty of replay value. You can also set up smaller games, including 2 player games that give an almost "chess-like" feel to the encounter, and are suitable for hot-seat multi-player play.
With so many players, you need a full featured diplomatic system. In Armada 2526 you can negotiate offensive and defensive alliance, non aggression pacts and trade agreements. Trade money, technology, colonies, ships and information. You can issue threats and ultimatums, or ask for favors. Friendships can be made and trust earned, or your reputation can be ruined by bullying and not honoring agreements.
Negotiations proceed by a series of offers and counter offers. Hard bargaining can drive the price down, but being generous builds friendships. During negotiations, you see an animated view of your counterpart, so you know who you are dealing with, and how they feel.
There are many different technology items to research. The game system encourages you to specialize in particular areas of tech, so as you expand and meet new players, you will find that they have radically different capabilities. Many of the technologies are disruptive, and force you to radically alter your strategy and tactics to utilize them, or to cope with the lack of.
You may for instance concentrate on building the biggest and best navy in the galaxy, and then watch in dismay as your ships flee from and opponent who has mastered the psychic arts, or be outmaneuvered by an adversary who has specialized in stealth or hyper space technology. You may have turned your planets into fortresses, but this won't help if they are infected by nanobots that eat defenses from the inside out, or if your opponent is impolite enough to drop an asteroid on your favorite colony.
Streamlined Economic System
Managing your empire is an important part of any strategy game, but can become a chore if too much micro-management is involved. Armada 2526's system is designed to let you make the major decisions about the development of each colony, without having to micro-manage every little detail. This way you can manage a large empire, play the game in a reasonable amount of time, and concentrate on strategy
Each colony develops by building various facilities. These add to its military construction abilities, economic potential, or research priorities. The number of facilities that each colony can operate is limited by the population, so players need to choose which areas each colony will specialize in. Choices can be changed, but at a cost..
Strategy and Intelligence
Peaceful coexistence is a good thing, but makes for a pretty dull game, so the game-play emphasis is on military strategy and intelligence. Fleets maneuver against each other, seeking to force or avoid a decisive confrontation, or to pick off a weakly defended planet.
Intelligence gathering is vital. You must know when to fight, and when to retreat, which fleet is the main thrust, and which the distraction. Try to divine the enemy's intentions while disguising your own. Technology and infrastructure can give you an edge in the information war, but only a bold and cunning admiral can exploit it.
The artificial intelligence routines have been created by an expert in the field, to provide AI players that are both worthy adversaries, and opponents that are fun to play against. The A.I.has been built into the game from the beginning of development, and updated to take advantage of new game features as they are added, giving the developers the maximum time to polish its behavior. This is in contrast to many games, where the AI is tacked on at the end of development.
Of course the same powerful routines developed for the opponents, are also available to assist the player in managing their empire, and to offer game play advice.
Game-Play Driven Development
Although Armada 2526 has glorious sound and graphics that inspire and immerse the player, the main focus is providing a great game play experiences. Whereas the majority of games created today develop their graphics engine first, leaving game play and AI to the end of development, Armada 2526 has been developed "game-play" first allowing it to be tested refined and polished while graphics and sound are being added