As you can see at the start of this thread, I was on the fence several weeks ago like you but I decided to buy it based off what some people here told me. I am very happy I did, I have definitely got my money worth out this game already. From the things you mention, it fits all of that well. I have not really had a problem with the pop transport as others have complained about. If you are looking for a solid 4x game that will be a good break from all the others out there, I have to recommend 2526. To answer your question about Sword of the Stars, that one shines on tactical battles and pretty good ship design. Downside is nothing with colonies other then a couple sliders and not much diplomacy options. Best suggestion to you, I would buy both of them. You can pickup Sword of the Stars complete on Impulse (and some of the other digital sites too) for really cheap now. Man, I have all of these games and I find they all stand on their own as great games, I like them all. Sometimes, I may want to play Space Empires 5, other times GalCiv2, Armada, SotS, EaW and I also always liked Lost Empire too. This all said, in the end I feel Armada is a great addition to any 4x gamer's library so you really can't go wrong. Oh, I had to pick my eyes up off the ground the first time I seen a 1000x1000 mini map, INSANE!
I am also doubting whether to buy the game. Unfortunately there are no reviews yet. It seems to fulfil my necessary criteria for a good 4x space game: good diplomacy, no detailed ship design and tactical battles, focus on empire management, not on micro management (perhaps there are some issues with bureaucracy, happiness and population transport?). Does anyone of you know if Sword of the stars also fulfils these criteria?
< Message edited by Warspite3 -- 12/11/2009 1:08:40 AM >