The scope of Sins Rebellion dwarfs any other strategy game.
A staple to every expansion of a strategy game is new units. Rebellion offers several different tiers of new units that fill out each of the races with new tactical options. Beginning with the smallest addition are the speedy Corvette class ships. They are cheap and easy to produce, and they pack a big punch in a tight little package. The greatest skill that the Corvettes have is their ability to disable enemy ship systems, making them a decisive unit in any fleet. There are new capital ships unique to each race that will command them to new levels. Capital ships are the heroes of the empire and come packed with their own strengths, weaknesses, and abilities that you can choose as they level up. I tried each of the new capital ships and they were a great addition to my empires and forced me to play outside my comfort zone since they diverged from the original units. My favorite unit that Rebellion brings into the fray are the Titan-class Warships. Titans are a devastating unit that each faction can create through much research and funding. They are gigantic ships that take time to level up, but once they become hardened from battle they are near unstoppable. Each of the new units in Rebellion offered something different and I found myself continually trying to integrate them in my march from planet to planet. Thankfully the Titans are not an automatic win button, but do give you a great boost of confidence as you charge across the stars with a hulking death ship.
Strategy games are fine when you play solo, but their strength comes from playing with friends. Sins of a Solar Empire stays true to this sentiment, and Rebellion does not do anything to ruin or enhance the co-op play. Up to 10 players can hop into a randomly generated map, meaning that a balanced co-operative game will have 5 friends versus 5 computer opponents. Ironclad refreshed the AI in Rebellion to be more dynamic and respond to player’s choices by changing up their strategies. Teams will have to rely on organization, diplomacy, and trust in order to ensure their empire’s survival. A game can be decided by a pivotal position in the galaxy where you will have to rely on one of your allies to hold while you jump star systems to make a decisive attack on an enemy’s weak spot. Communication is pivotal in Sins of a Solar Empire as one costly mistake could mean the eradication of one team mate. Sometimes you have to pick a hero and sacrifice yourself for the good of the team to gain a victory, but that is the price you pay in a cunning strategy game. The only trouble I had with the co-op was in trying to load a multiplayer game from a previous save, which resulted in some teammates not having the correct save file. However, if you can get four friends to agree to book a day to play Rebellion, it is one of the most rewarding co-op experiences you can have in a game. Space is big and lonely so just remember to bring some friends along so at least you have someone to talk to.
The Titan class warships bring a new level of devastation to the Sins Empire.
Sins of a Solar Empire was a stellar game that has high appeal for a limited audience. It takes a patient person with a tactical mind to command an empire at this level. Rebellion makes small additions and improves the game to give it that extra bit of polish that you didn’t realize was missing. With new victory conditions, races, units, and a graphical overhaul to the engine Rebellion is the ultimate Sins of a Solar Empire package. Fans of the series should immediately purchase the game, and those that are sitting on the fence should turn to Sins Rebellion if they are looking for a highly strategic, calculating RTS. The scope can be intimidating at first, so it is best played with some friends to work through the intricacies of the game. Just don’t expect a group of friends to play very often, since Rebellion is not a day killer...it is a weekend eater.
The Co-Op Experience: Up to 10 players can play in a randomly generated galaxy with any number of teams. A balanced co-op game would be 5 players vs 5 AI. Technically you can't drop in, but you can drop out at any time and have the AI take over. Players can work together to conquer enemy AI, utilizing interface tools for communication and collaboration.
Co-Optimus game reviews focus on the cooperative experience of a game, our final score graphic represents this experience along with an average score for the game overall. For an explanation of our scores please check our Review Score Explanation Guide.