Sword of the Stars: Born of Blood review

More battles beyond the bloody stars

GamesRadar+ Verdict


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    Awesome multiplayer

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    quick maps

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    Pretty cheap


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    Awful visuals

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    Single-player lacks narrative progression

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    New features aren't noticeable

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Loved by its fans and missed by almost everyone else, Sword of the Stars was perhaps the best RT4X game of the last year. The RT4X genre is "real-time Civilization in space." Take charge of a race; lead them through space to glory, to the detriment of all other races.

But first, the bad news: Born of Blood still looks like it's been created using the 3D digital equivalent of poster paint and potato shapes. Whether you'd find the graphics charming or infantile is a matter of taste, but SotS made a far greater impact on the gelatinous blob that lies behind the retina.

As standalone expansions go, BoB is cheap enough, but unless you really loved the original like a first-born child, you're hardly going to be that bothered with a new race, some added units and ship sections, along with a tweaked user interface.

Sure, there's more to it than that, but the single-player still lacks any narrative progression. In fact, it isn't until you spend some time in-game that you notice the changes. And when you do, about 70 turns in, they explode like a firework.

BoB also features turn-based pondering - now with trade and diplomacy too - interspersed with short, sharp real-time battles that almost rival the best of what Total War has to offer. In multiplayer though, it beats it hands-down.

More info

DescriptionA sci-fi turn-based strategy stand-alone expansion to the original, it's not pretty but the price and multiplayer are quite nice.
US censor rating"Everyone 10+"
UK censor rating""
Release date1 January 1970 (US), 1 January 1970 (UK)