Arcen Games may currently be basking in the glory of A Valley Without Wind, but they haven't forgotten about their original (and ferociously difficult) 4X epic. AI War will soon be receiving another expansion - Ancient Shadows - which has now entered public beta. The champions are coming...
Once updated to the latest version of AI War, players can use the Ancient Shadows beta installer from here, demo it in trial mode or go pick up a license key (which acts both as beta entry and a pre-order). It will set you back £2.64 until release, which works out as a 20% discount if you buy before October.
The biggest new feature comes in the form of the menacing Champions: enormous galaxy-smashing super starships that replace a player's entire infrastructure. I'll let Arcen explain:
"With the Ancient Shadows expansion, you can now set a player to the "Champion" role and instead of a home command station and all the usual stuff a player starts with they get a single modular ship. But what a ship. At the beginning it's basically a super-starship that's pretty powerful but nothing world-shattering. But it can gain experience, and with experience it can upgrade modules."
"More importantly, the champions can travel to new parts of the galaxy that no normal ship can get to, and interact with the splinter factions of Humans, Zenith, Neinzul, and Spire that are found there. Successfully helping a splinter faction can (among other rewards) unlock whole new lines of modules and even new and bigger hulls that your champion can switch to. For the lore-inclined among you, these "offroad" scenarios also reveal more of the backstory through journal entries."
Here's the feature list, because I know how much you like them.
- 9 new bonus ship classes (coming soon, not implemented yet).
- 3 core AI guard posts and one new minor faction (coming soon, not implemented yet).
- New AI types (coming soon, not implemented yet).
- New Map types (coming soon, not implemented yet).
- A large amount of new music (to be released when the expansion fully launches, you'll need to download the final installer to get the music, it won't be delivered via update).