At last we're being unchained by our marketing masters to start being able to publicly speak about Sins of a Solar Empire: Diplomacy.
We (and by we I mean Ironclad and Stardock) can't talk about all the other cool stuff that's been happening behind the scenes. Mainly, it's because we're afraid of our PR manager Stephanie (if you knew her, you'd be afraid too).
But as I type, Blair at Ironclad has her distracted talking about something or other so I'm free to write here to tell you a little bit about what's going on.
Sins of a Solar Empire: Diplomacy. What's the idea here?
The idea is to have a secondary way to win the game other through sheer conquest. In the current diplomatic system, AI players give "missions" to players. Human players can't do the same back.
With Diplomacy, this system is being heavily revamped with a new technology tree. The technology tree could be views as a diplomatic arms race because diplomacy includes espionage and counter-espionage in there. How far it goes will depend largely on the beta testers and their preferences.
Then there's the balance and new game modes. We'll be putting our head together this week to see what can reasonably be put into a $9.95 micro expansion. But balance and tweaks you guys would like to see in Diplomacy you can freely post them here and we'll make sure to look at them.
There's also a whole new diplomacy system that lets players have a much more tactical view of why your relations are what with a given player. If you've ever played Civilization IV you can see some of the inspiration. The idea though is that relations shouldn't involve excessive guess work.
The official season has now officially started though for Diplomacy.