Stellaris: Console Edition is not for the gamer who likes a quick bit of adrenaline fueled mayhem, before heading on to the next extreme game on their playlist.
No, Stellaris is for the gamer who likes to take their time, working out all the strategies and choices on offer, and utilising every technique going in order to truly earn the mantle of ‘Master of the Universe’.
The original base game of Stellaris is a deep, huge, sim strategy experience that takes a genre which doesn’t normally translate well to the console market, before nailing multiple aspects. I’ve been playing it since first release on Xbox One in early 2019 and have really enjoyed the game’s ideas, admiring the deep sim qualities and the scale of its ambition. But now the first piece of DLC has landed for the console version – the Plantoid Species pack. But it begs the question… what is it all about, and is it worth your cash?
The Plantoid Species pack for Stellaris: Console Edition is a new bit of cheap DLC that gives you access to a new race of plant-based sentient beings to play with. With these new races, you also get the ability to view 15 new species portraits, alongside the viewing pleasure of designs of the new ships and civilians, as well as new cityscape art.
Now, without a word of a lie, Stellaris is a huge game to play with in its base form, and if you’re like me, even after all this time you’ll probably think that you’ve still only touched a fraction what is on offer – even many tens of hours in. The DLC doesn’t really bring anything new to the gameplay or ever challenge the structure of the universe though, but it does offer a new chess piece on the board and that in itself is an intriguing enough proposition.
The whole concept behind running with this plant-based species is a great one to look at, with it providing an interesting concept of a different type of race of intelligent life forms to play, as you involve yourself with a quest to conquer the cosmos. The big question I feel is whether you will however want to pay out, even though it comes in at a very cheap price, as essentially this is a cosmetic add-on. The other side of the argument is that the DLC adds a new layer of species to the ever-growing universe of Stellaris and it adds to your own personal narrative into the story you are experiencing in this huge game.
I’m a huge fan of the artwork in the game as a whole and if you’re like me then you’ll be extremely pleased with the 15 Plantoid portraits on offer here; ranging from the more humanoid plant hybrid look, to the ‘Day of the Triffid” full out plant portrait, these designs are skillfully made and beautiful to look at. The ship designs are still good but not as impressive as the portraits or the artwork on the cityscape, as they look a bit familiar to the others but with bits of green stuck on them.
The Stellaris: Plantoid Species Pack on Xbox One – the first piece of DLC on the console version of the game – is a nice little extra but not a game changer. You will have access to a whole new species of sentential life to play with, and while it won’t necessarily affect the gameplay, it will hopefully have an impact on your own personal story. There is a question about whether this is really worth the purchase even at the low price point, but I think you will know that for yourself, depending on how invested you are in the Stellaris universe.