At the moment of writing, it is now more than three years since the original and initial Matrix release of Shadow Empire.
The number of patches, additions and upgrades applied to Shadow Empire since release have been staggering in quantity and scope. I have to admit I have never been so enthusiastic about doing continued work on an already released game.
With OceaniaI I even launched my first DLC ever and hope to follow up with at least one more DLC in the future. Note that I am putting in at least as much hard work into upgrading the Core Game as in doing DLC work. The current major new Core Game version 1.25 has been in the works for almost half a year for example.
The version 1.25 Hazards & Hardships Update brings many changes that make the game more interesting, more diverse and more challenging. With the modeling of water salinity, dissolved heavy metals, PH levels (acidity-alkalinity), notably Food and Water production will not be as obvious on many Planets anymore. Ammo-usage has been completely revamped, resulting in making, especially offensive, warfare with heavy and/or mechanized equipment quite expensive and a logistical challenge. On the contrary: Infantry has now become relatively much more economical to use. Energy weapons, once developed, will still be powerful, but Ammo-based weaponry should not be ditched that lightly anymore, especially on Planets with low air pressure and/or gravity. Ensuring adequate Energy production, especially in the early game, will also be more challenging. The Tech Tree has received an additional 20 Techs, including Furnaces, Ammo Factories, Landmines, Ablat Coating and Techs to obtain Hide Points for your Models.
The version 1.25 Hazards & Hardships Update also brings completely new features. As the Battle Report, that is accessible through the History Window and it allows you to inspect the battles fought during the other player’s turns in much more detail than previously. There is now also a Blue Prints feature that allows you to design new Models with a much better interface, especially if you like experimenting with all the possible variations. The Private Economy has been reworked and the addition of Farmsteads and the ability of your Population to go into debt will now allow very small groups of Population to eventually scratch out a viable living in a new Zone.
And the Artificial Intelligence (AI) has received a lot of love as well and should prove more of a challenge than in v1.20. Notably it is handling its economy better, more likely to use Tanks and it is also able to use its Air Forces now.
I wanted to update this manual not only to sing my own praise, but especially to take the opportunity to thank the larger Shadow Empire community. The hundreds, if not thousands, of issues posted in the Tech Forums over the years have made it possible to polish Shadow Empire to a very high degree. All the discussions about the mechanics in the forums, wish lists, youTube videos and the balance issues found notably by PBEM players organized on Discord have helped me balance and fine tune the game more and more. Without you it would not have been possible to get Shadow Empire where it is today! A big thank you to all of you who took the effort to bring me feedback!
And let’s see if we can get Shadow Empire even better in the years to come. Many plans still remain on the drawing board. Enjoy the game and see you on the Matrix or Steam forums!
For more information hop on over to Matrix Games: https://www.matrixgames.com/news/shadow-empire-hazards-and-hardships-major-update-v125-out-now