This is for anyone who's deciding whether or not to buy SOASE, and also for those of you who like to read a good war story, here you are. (some parts may be slow for seasoned Sins players, but keep in mind I'm explaining some factors for new players!) Just for those new players' benefits, I'm playing Sins of a Solar Empire with the expansion Entrenchment, where some features like star bases and anti-structure units come from. Plain or "vanilla" Sins might not have some of the things shown here.
GAME START. It's a large multi-star map with me and five medium AIs. For no particular reason besides it sounding awesome, my guys are called the Twisted Legion. The first things I do at my home planet Ra-Shalom are build a capital ship factory, establish extractors on my metal and crystal asteroids, and build a Temple of Harmony (I'm playing as the Advent). I build three scouts to start me off and the Progenitor Mothership to fulfill both my free capital ship choice and my colonizer ship. This saves me the credits of building a Missionary Vessel to colonize my worlds, which is very useful in the beginning of the game. While waiting for it to be constructed I build a second Temple of Harmony and save up to research the ice planet colonization technology, called Artic Evangelism.
Inside this Temple of Harmony, thousands of scientists struggle to discover the secrets that will win the war for the Advent.
Huzzah! My flagship, the Lumiscant, is constructed and space worthy!
The Lumiscant, shown here with the capital ship factory in the background, will serve as the core of the Advent fleet.
I send it to the nearby asteroid planet Yasuda, a fighter squadron under construction in its hangar bay. I build two more scouts and set them off exploring my star system Deneb Algedi. The Lumiscant phases in at Yasuda, which is being guarded by the pesky Nahradin Imperials! I quickly wipe them out and establish a colony on Yasuda.
Here, digitally remastered for your benefit, can you see the Lumiscant finishing off the Nahradin Imperials.
Meanwhile, as my flagship destroys the foolish Nahradin Imperials, on one of my enemies, the Rolus Solbare, sends me a mission which will increase their happiness with me if I complete it. As we are both Advent I see a lucrative potential alliance here and scramble together the metal the Rolus Solbare were demanding. Their happiness with me increases by 25 percent, as in the early stages of our campaigns resources are preciously few and are greatly coveted. With Yasuda firmly under my control, I set out to colonize the more heavily defended ice planet Pindarus, defended by a garrison of Dallmoor Bandits. They have seven times my number of ships, which includes only my flagship, but the Lumiscant has the limitless power of the Unity behind her and she defeats the enemy, coming out with a full hull, although minimum shields.
The Lumiscant uploads its firing plan, showing which ships it will attack in which order. The ships in question are digitally highlighted to easily make them out.
While this skirmish is underway, another of my enemies, a Vasari faction calling themselves the Adjun Imperials, sends me a mission. You can't have too many allies, I thought, and readily transferred the demanded resources. Unfortunately, this would be the last time the Adjun Imperials and I would see eye-to-eye.
43 MINUTES INTO GAME
Our campaign is filled with victory after victory! I've added the asteroid planets Tolosca and Kahnia to my empire, along with the volcanic planet Eumolos. My fleet, which consists of my flagship Lumiscant, my Radiance Class Battleship Direnus, and ten Disciple Vessels, arrive at the Terran planet Hercynia, ready for a fight, but instead find the Rolus Solbare occupying the gravity well!
The Direnus, accompanied by several Disciple Vessels, phases in at a wormhole to reinforce my main fleet.
Now the Rolus Solbare and I had entered a ceasefire and trade alliance by this point, but that was still no peace treaty. Things were tense as we both rushed to be the first to colonize Hercynia.
The Twisted Legion is shown here green, and the Rolus Solbare blue. The race is on to colonize Hercynia.
The Lumiscant beat their flagship Adventus to the punch, adding Hercynia to my empire. Now I sent my ships on the way to the still uncolonized volcanic planet of Maichin, inside the Rolus Solbare empire, as it was the last uncolonized planet in our system. Unfortunately, the Adjun Imperials, who I had foolishly ignored up to this point, decided this was the time to strike and sent five Karrastra Destructors to my asteroid planet Kahnia, followed soon after by a Ravastra Skirmisher and a level 4 Skirantra Class Carrier! It, combined with its bomber squadron and three fighter squadrons shooting out of its hangar bay, posed a serious threat to my four Beam Defense Platforms, backed up by two repair bays, that were spaced out strategically around Kahnia. But all that would still be pointless if I couldn't do something against those five Karrastra Destructors, ships that would rain nuclear death upon Kahnia. Being an asteroid planet with a small population, Kahnia wouldn't stand a chance.
The Karrastra Destructors circle around the gravity well, looking for a way closer to my planet while still keeping out of range of the Beam Defense Platforms.
The Skirantra Class Carrier, with Kahnia and its orbital structures in the background.
Luckily, the Karrastra Destructors spent the first few minutes circling outside the range of my Beam Defense Platforms, trying to find a way to my planet without being targeted by my static defense. But I placed those platforms too carefully for that! While the Karrastras deliberated about going under my platforms' fire, I directed my fleet back to Kahnia and ordered the construction of two Hangar Defenses. Kahnia was on the other side of my empire, however, so I sat down for a siege. The Skirantra Carrier and its squadrons targeted the nearest Beam Defense Platform, and it readily began firing back. I wasn't too hopeful, however. One Beam Defense Platform would not make a serious dent in a capital ship.
The Beam Defense Platform fires on the Skirantra Carrier.
The Vasari bombers launch their payloads, specially designed to deal maximum damage against structures. In the distance, another squadron does the same.
To make matters worse, one of my Beam Defense Platforms was under construction and inoperable, presenting an opening to the Karrastra Destructors. They turned and headed straight for my asteroid. Fortunately, the platform was completed and started firing, but the Karrastras were set on their course and did not turn away.
The Karrastras approach Kahnia...
...And open fire.
I ordered the construction of emergency bomb shelters for my citizens and hoped the Karrastras' delay gave my fleet enough time to get there before I lost the planet. Soon a Kanrak Assailant and two more Ravastra Skirmishers joined the fight against me, sensing defeat.
Unfortunately, the population on Kahnia was completely wiped out seconds before my fleet phased in. Along with the planet went the under-construction hangar bays, along with the construction frigates building them.
The entire Untiy mourned the loss of the colony at Kahnia.
But then my fleet arrived! The Adjun Imperials would pay for their massacre of Kahnia's population. But that moment was not to be now. As Kahnia fell and my fleet phased in, the Vasari scoundrels turned tail and retreated to their desert planet of Peneleos, where an Orkulus star base was positioned, or so my intelligence told me.
The Skirantra Carrier passes the Direnus and a Disciple core as it makes its way out of Kahnia's gravity well. Only temporary damage was made to its shields.
I would go after them, but I had to build up my fleet first. And I had another pressing issue. The Karrastra Destructors, phasing from the same place as the rest of the Vasari fleet, were actually headed towards my volcanic planet Eumolos! They must have been overconfident with their victory at Kahnia. Although Eumolos was only protected by a lone Hangar Defense, it was a simple matter for me to phase my fleet in right behind them and wipe them out. Not one escaped. Back at my home planet Ra-Shalom, I constructed a Halycon Class Carrier named Imperia and a Talion Savior deep-space construction cruiser, and sent them both on the long trip to Kahnia, recently recolonized by me. The Talion Savior could construct a star base of my own to rival the one at Peneleos. It was time to start building up my army.
Unfortunately, I had accidently sent the Impervia to Peneleos. It was soon attacked by the Vasari's star base and fleet around it, but this also helped me gather new intel on the planet, and I learned that the star base was only newly-created, and so would not be too hard to destroy. The Impervia made it back to Kahnia, with depleted shields and a half-destroyed hull. Taking the star base would not be too hard, but it would not be easy either.
The Impervia phases back in at Kahnia, venting atmosphere. In the distance, the repair bays wait for the Imperia to come to them to begin hull restoration.
1 HOUR AND 8 MINUTES INTO GAME
I now have credits flowing in fast due to a strategic system of trade ports spaced throughout my empire, and was building my invasion fleet fast.
My trade port at Ra-Shalom, where several trade ships are collecting trade goods before journeying on my extensive trade route, connected by a trade port at each of my planets. The longer the route, the more credits I collect.
A convoy of trade ships stop at my trade port at Kahnia.
In my invasion force, I envisioned three or four capital ships leading the charge against the Orkulus star base, or "Ol' Orky" as my fleet captains call it, soaking up its weapons' fire as Solanus Adjudicators, the ultimate structure-stomping units, sent wave after wave of plasma at the starbase, protected by a few Iconus Guardians that would project massive shields around them, shielding the Adjudicators from any fire that the capital ships didn't take. Although the Solanus could take down a structure in seconds, their hull and shields were very weak, and needed protection. This force, accompanied by Illuminator and Disciple Vessels, would take Peneleos by storm. But for the moment my empire was under attack. From out of a wormhole came a small fleet belonging to the Vasari Vanidas Faction, and they were poised to strike at either Hercynia or Eumolos. I took the ships battle-ready at Kahnia and order them to Hercynia, where the Vanidas Faction sent five Karrastra Destructors in a first wave against the planet. Hercynia, defended only by a Hangar Defense, could start being bombarded by the Karrastras while the rest of the Vanidas fleet prepared the main assault.
The wormhole deep inside my empire that the Vanidas Faction came out of. Apparently it connects with another wormhole in a separate star system. Foolishly, I forgot it could potentially be a threat.
Foolishly, the Vanidas Faction sent a portion of its forces against Eumolos and the other half against Hercynia. Big mistake. Eumelos, next to Kahnia, is easily defended by my fleet. The Vasari taskforce was forced to retreat to the wormhole, my fleet hurrying after it. Meanwhile, Hercynia was only 279 of its 1500 health remaining, so things look grim for the 104 million remaining colonists (out of 280). I fear that I may lose Hercynia before wiping out the invaders.
The Karrastras, while being shot at by my Hangar Defense's squadrons, do a lot of damage to Hercynia. The fate of the planet rests in the next few minutes.
At 145 health, however, the last remaining Karrastra Destructor tries to flee as my fighter squadrons destroy most of its hull. Hercynia immediately begins recovering, having held out the bombardment with the help of level 1 bomb shelters.
The last Karrastra Destructor is destroyed, and the people of Hercynia cheer.
Part of the victorious fighter squadron that saved Hercynia. They turn back to the Hangar Defense, ready to combat the next threat.
But the battle is not over! Although Hercynia can no longer be bombarded, the Vasari taskfore was still attacking its orbital structures. With my fleet about to arrive at the wormhole, the enemy flagship, a Vulkoras Class Desolator, and its escort decide to phase in at Hercynia. Too bad for them, but my fleet makes it into the wormhole's gravity well before the enemy ships can phase jump. The Vulkoras, caught between my fleet and my planet, decides to escape through the wormhole back to whatever star system they came from. The Vulkoras takes heavy damage on its shields, but escapes through the wormhole before they can be brought down. My fleet is stuck on my side of the wormhole, unable to pursue them because I haven't researched the necessary technology to make my ships able to traverse wormholes. I order my Talion Savior, which I brought down behind my fleet, to begin construction of a star base in the wormhole's gravity well to halt any more fleets that travel into it. The crew members of the Talion named the Transcencia Class star base Purity, which I felt was an apt name and did not change it. Purity would keep this wormhole pure and free of any enemy ships. I sent my fleet back to Kahnia to meet up with the newly constructed forces and to prepare to launch an offensive against the Adjun Imperials at Peneleos. Kahnia, during this time, had been assaulted by several small taskforces of Ravastra Skirmishers, but as it now boasted nine Beam Defense Platforms, two repair bays, and two hangar defenses, with a combined four fighter squadrons and two bomber squadrons, the enemy ships were quickly cut down.
1 HOUR AND 22 MINUTES INTO GAME
My fleet was now lead by the Lumiscant, the Direnus, the Imperia, and a new Rapture Class Battlecruiser named Immaculata. The rest of the fleet was composed of two Aeria Drone Hosts, mobile hangar bays for fighter and bomber squadrons, six Solanus Adjudicators, anti-structure units, two Iconus Guardians, support cruisers, eleven Illuminator Vessels, long-range combat ships, ten Disciple Vessels, primary combat ships, five bomber squadrons, and ten fighter squadrons. With this large force I attacked Peneleos. My plan worked perfectly. I sent my bomber and fighter squadrons against the star base, quickly depleting its shields. Then my Adjudicators began their attack on the star base, sending long waves of seemingly infinite plasma against it. Within seconds, the star base's hull was breached and it went nova.
The Solanus Adjudicators began their assault on the mobile Vasari star base.
The star base's hull is breached, causing several internal systems to explode.
The star base explodes, jetting chunks of metal and atmosphere at my fleet. The capital ships' shields shimmer as they reflect the debris.
An enemy Kortul Class Devastator phased in, and I sent my fleet rushing to destroy it before it fled to the enemy asteroid of Parvamenon. It phased out in time, however, so my fleet gave chase, leaving the Solanus Adjudicators behind to destroy the remaining structures. I would send in Purge Vessels and a Missionary Vessel to bombard and colonize the planet. Unfortunately for me, Parvamenon was defended by two capital ships, twenty or so frigates of various kinds, and an Orkulus star base. My fleet phased right into all of it. While my fleet could have taken out the enemy fleet with no problem, the star base was another matter, especially without any Solanus Adjudicators. Retreat!
Even though I had only been in Parvamenon for a few seconds, several of my frigates had been destroyed by the star base. I refitted my fleet and payed a large sum of credits to the Rolus Solbare, turning their happiness towards me to 80 percent. Time for some quick diplomancy. If I completed one or two more missions for the Rolus Solbare, their happiness would be at 100 percent, and I would be able to secure a peace treaty. With the Rolus sworn to me, I could concentrate on defeating the Adjun Imperials without worry of my exposed west flank.
As I subjugated and colonized Peneleos, two capital ships belonging to the Vanidas Faction came out of the wormhole protected by my almost fully upgraded star base Purity. I laughed at them. Purity, boasting twn squadrons and plasma, laser, and special psionic surge attacks, would make short work of the level 2 and 4 capital ships. I was right.
Both capital ships vent atmosphere heavily, and Purity is just warming up.
The level 4 cap goes first, followed soon after by the second. At Purity, a new psionic surge is just being blasted at the remaining capital ship.
I grouped my fleet together at Peneleos, ready to assault Parvamenon. During my defensive campaign I was lucky enough to secure a ceasefire with a TEC force (Trader Emergency Coalition, the "human" side) called the Tondam Corporation. Unfortunately, I knew our relations would soon break down as they wanted me to destroy civilian structures belonging to the Rolus Solbare. I was set in making the Rolus Solbare accept a peace treaty, so the Twisted Legion and the Tondam Corporation would soon again be at war. Then the Rolus Solbare offered me a mission. Destroy four of the Adjun Imperials' civilian structures, and I would have their undying happiness along with a resource reward. As I was planning on attacking the Adjun Imperials anyway, this was a god-send. With 19 minutes left to complete the mission, I lined up my new, larger fleet to attack Parvamenon. Just then an Adjun Imperial Jarun Migrator phased into Peneleos and began constructing a star base to assault the planet with. (Vasari star bases being mobile, unlike the other stationary star bases, and specializing in being the Vasari's anti-star base unit) Needless to say, my squadrons quickly flew over and destroyed it before it could be constructed very far.
The fighter and bomber squadrons assaulting the incomplete star base.
My fleet then reformed into lines and entered phase space. We took control of Parvamenon and completed the Rolus Solbare's mission with 16 minutes to spare. The whole conquest took no longer then 3 minutes once it was started.
The star base, highlighted in red, is attacked by my bomber squadrons, highlighted in green, and my fleet, in blue.
It is soon destroyed.
Without wasting a beat I proposed a peace treaty with the Rolus Solbare, and they accepted. "A historic moment," one Rolus Solbare official was quoted to have said. I couldn't have agreed more. This done, I transfer my seat of government from Ra-Shalom to Eumolos, making it my home planet to equalize allegiance between my planets, although it wasn't really necessary. I had been constructing Temples of Communion from the very first minutes of the game, and now much of the star system was listening to my propaganda and feeling the influence of my culture.
The star system Deneb Algedi as it is now. The planets in green belong to my Twisted Legion empire, the blue to my allies, the Rolus Solbare, and the red to the Adjun Imperials. The red planet between the sun and Eumolos is a pirate base, heavily defended, but they do not leave their gravity well so that is a good as a solid wall to stop invasions coming from the star. My propaganda and culture's influence can be seen by the phase lanes in green, spanning across my entire empire and through part of the Rolus Solbare's. Enemy propaganda is the most likely reason why my culture has not spread into Adjun Imperial territory.
I order my fleet to attack the Adjun Imperials' asteroid planet Hecuba, and from there it will be onwards to their capital which I believe to be Odessa. After that it will be onwards to the two other star systems to take out the TEC's Tondam Corporation and Nitheim Rebels and the Vasari's Vanidas Faction.
The three star systems. The bottom one is Deneb Algedi, and the other two are unknown. Only the middle one is colonized, leaving the top one empty. I will most likely send my forces to establish a foothold in the upper star system, then leave that colony to take over the rest of the star system and send my fleet to the center star system to assault my enemies there. The blue in the central star system is the Tondam Corporation, who I will soon break off negotiations with.
The only problem now is that pesky wormhole. Even as my Ever Victorious Fleet marches to victory against the Adjun Imperials, Vanidas Faction capital ships have snuck around my star base and are en route to my new home planet Eumolos. Eumolos is well defended with four Beam Defense Platforms, two repair bays, and two Hangar Defenses with four fighter squadrons, one bomber squadron, and one homing mine squadron that I never got around to deploying as mines. It is too late now to prepare a mine field against these capital ships, but hopefully Eumolos will survive.
I will add more later.