UPDATE: Paradox have announced the release date of Stellaris: Synthetic Dawn as coming September 21, where it will retail for $9.99/£6.99. To mark this announcement Paradox have released a handy breakdown video of the features of the story expansion, which can be seen below. In it Martin Anward, Game Director of Stellaris, explains what players can expect from Synthetic Dawn. This includes details on the Machine Empires and the three different types, Fallen Machine Empires that can be allies or enemies, a new voice for the assistant, and lots of pre-release gameplay footage.
If you want to pre-order Synthetic Dawn, go here.
Original Story Follows:
The next Story Pack expansion for Stellaris has been revealed, titled Synthetic Dawn, and it focuses on creating an entirely A.I.-driven mechanical empire and destroying all those pesky humans. At last. The DLC will release later this year. There's a very ambiguous trailer which you can see here or below, as well as a big forum update with a lot more details on the intriguing expansion.
Machine Empires are essentially either the Borg from Star Trek or Skynet from The Terminator, with a single hive mind intelligence (similar to the biological ones already in the game) that doesn't have to worry about Factions or Happiness. Although they're also similar to the Machines in The Matrix, as they're all properly mechanical robots who keep "organics" as slave or batteries. There's no integrating the local population into your empire as citizens here, it's enslavement or death. Yoinks.
There are four types of Machine Empire civics available. The basic level have normal diplomacy and can expel or purge organics, and that's about it. 'Determined Exterminators' are all about conflict and are determined to wipe out all organics, much like Bender from Futurama. Okay, or the Daleks. They'll never do diplomacy with organic empires, but happily get along with other robotic empires and the already existing Ascended Synths.
'Driven Assimilators' are very much The Borg, seeking to understand organics by assimilating them. The advantage of these guys is that they can gain access to some of the benefits of organic civilizations. They're generally feared despite being slightly nicer than the Exterminators. 'Rogue Servitors' actually enslave the population and keep them as "Bio-Trophies", and actually get influence bonuses depending on how many Bio-Trophies they have. They basically want to care for people, and think the best way to care for them is to keep them closely guarded and don't let them do anything but get fat. You know, like in Wall-E.
That's a lot of sci-fi references for a single post! This expansion certainly sounds a lot of fun. Is it enough to make you jump into Stellaris, if you've been holding off? Let us know in the comments.
Stellaris: Synthetic Dawn will be out later this year. There's currently no word on exactly when or how much it will cost, although most likely it will be between £7.49-£14.99.