The original Reach for the Stars is noted to have been a pioneer in 4x Space Strategy games. 4x Strategy refers to the four activities you perform, Explore, Expand, Exploit, and Exterminate. Owners of the original Reach for the Stars (2000) release may also download the v1.41 update from the Matrix Games website and bring their original version up to speed.
In Reach for the Stars there are fifteen races, each with specific advantages and disadvantages, and you must lead yours to victory by conquering and researching. You can, for instance, take the Combine race and use superior weapons and military equipment to your advantage, or the powerhouse economy of the LsLs. As you grow and research new buildings and ships become available to you, which will help you conquer new worlds and new enemies.