The recently released Distant Worlds 2 is a member of an incredibly deep and complex video game genre, the 4X strategy game. This includes well-known games like the Civilization series, Stellaris, and Endless Space. In Distant Worlds 2, how you handle the wealth of options and strategies will determine the success or failure of your very own space empire. However, there’s quite a lot to keep track of. There are multiple economies, diplomacy, fleet management, mining, and even potentially huge-scale space battles.
If you’re new to Distant Worlds or the 4X genre, I’m going to give you a few helpful tips in this Distant Worlds 2 Beginner’s Guide that will hopefully help you progress while you wade through the many interlocking systems of the game. You can also take a look at our other Distant Worlds 2 Guides for more in-depth information.
Build Your Empire Carefully
In the early hours of Distant Worlds 2, the game will drop many tutorial windows on you, explaining what different ships, buildings, and equipment does. In most games, this would be a sign that you should purchase what the tutorial mentions so that you can progress. DON’T DO THAT HERE. Distant Worlds 2 is absolutely packed full of things to buy, research, and use, but if you go on a buying spree before your various economies are set up and making money for you, you will be in a serious financial bind for the rest of your game. Pay attention to the tutorial, but only pay for what makes sense for you to have for your specific needs.
The Two Economies
Speaking of successful multiple economies, this is the cornerstone of monetary survivability in Distant Worlds 2. You’re going to want to have more money coming in than what’s going out, and the only way to do that is by having a healthy private economy that supports the government economy. The best way to do this is to complete research and make agreements with other nations that will, in turn, affect private economy aspects like shipbuilding, the tourism industry, and trade. At the outset, private investors will pay government-run planets and stations to build ships for their own use. The building of the ships and the fuel costs will be added to your bonus income.
After you’ve completed specific research, made trade agreements, and built up your tourism industry, the private economy will use their ships to carry out the trade of goods and transport of tourists, feeding the cycle of money going into your pocket. It’s all a little complicated, but it will make sense after your first 10 or so hours in Distant Worlds 2.
As a government entity, you can not directly influence the private economy. You can, however, set exploration policies that will restrict their exploits to specific areas or planets, concentrating their efforts and benefitting your knowledge of the region. It’s a little sneaky, but doing this will send private mining ships to areas you chose, and when they find any resources or materials they will report back what they found, filling out that information for you in your menus. It’s extremely helpful, and if you hit the jackpot on a specific planet, you can more or less restrict mining activity to the surrounding area, maximizing your bonus income and profits.
Grow Your Military Might
While you’re developing your economies and starting to generate money, you should really think about starting to build your military. You’ll be ok for several hours, but once your nation reaches a certain point of success, you will be threatened by aliens, space pirates, and other nations who want to get in on your action. Having a sizable armada to protect your colonies and capitols will go a long way towards continuing to grow your influence, profitability, and strength. You can build infantry by selecting “manage troops” from the colony menu after it’s been selected. This will defend from ground-level threats like violent rebellions.
To prevent entities from invading your planet, you should research Frigates as soon as you can. They are the second level of military ship after the escort class, and they have enough firepower to stop pirates dead in their tracks. Keep in mind that upkeep and recruitment costs apply to both of these things, so you’ll need to continue to be profitable before you expand too much.
Because Distant Worlds 2 is so massive in its scope and execution, the developers have included many automation options to help you manage everything. In fact, the automation options are so in-depth, that you could potentially have the game run itself right in front of you! That might be fun for some, but most will want to have hands-on with at least some of the game, and that is what I recommend for new players. If you begin to be overwhelmed by all of the systems, go ahead and have it be automated until you can wrap your head around it.
I hope these few tips are helpful in your understanding of Distant Worlds 2. This massive game will take a while to learn completely, but is totally worth it and extremely rewarding.