Stellaris’ new Plantoid species pack sprouts onto Steam

In the style we’ve come to expect of Paradox, given how deep-rooted DLC is in their other Grand Strategy games, comes their latest content pack, the Plantoid species pack for Stellaris [Review], a cosmetic add-on that features fifteen new species portraits and accompanying city art and ship templates. The practice is similar to that in Crusader Kings 2 and Europa Universalis IV, where cosmetic packs abound, though until the start of this year I hadn’t botany.

With vacation over for Paradox – the team takes a collective break to enjoy the whole fifteen days of Swedish summer during July – they’re back to work on, well, all their titles. Stellaris would be no exception, and alongside our sappy tree-friends comes a small, bugfixing-oriented patch. While the city art took a while to grow on me, the moving portrait packs are just adorable. You can get it for £5.59/€7,99/$7.99, if the sort of thing floats your boat.

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I, for one, welcome our new plantoid overlords.

With the new Heinlein patch suffering changes since it was first announced, Martin Anward – Game Director for Stellaris – has brought to twitter what we can expect from the third major patch, after Clarke and Asimov: a very welcome Federation victory, for those of us who fancy less bloodbath-oriented empires; Ctrl-Shift-clicking to add orders to the start of a queue, rather than its end; a border distance modifier and the also very much needed addition of rally points. Half of my late-game was micro’ing where my new ships would go, so I’m rather glad to see that issue being addressed.

Also, here’s a curious tidbit about carnivorous plants that had I known when I was ten I wouldn’t have sourly disappointed myself: if you help them by adding nutrient-rich soil to where they’re growing, instead of getting bigger and growing a second mouth large enough to eat puppies, they’ll go “Well, fuck eatin’ insects then mate, I’ll just feed off this delicious dirt.” and not use their bug-eating appendage. Ever. You’d think having a botanist mother meant she’d tell you that doing such a thing to your carnivorous plant would ruin it, making it like any other dull, vegetarian plant, but noooo…

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