X4 Foundations vs Elite Dangerous vs Everspace 2

henriquejr

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Hello All!

To the members who have played the games mentioned in the title, can you tell me the differences among them?

Maybe I buy one of them in the current sales but I'm clueless about which one I should get.

Thanks in advance!
 
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I've played the first two but not Everspace 2. I prefer the empire building of X4 but unfortunately X4 doesn't quite deliver everything it promises.

X Foundations - You fight/explore/trade/build (I think they call it 4X) to build a space empire. Requires a lot of effort from the player but it is mostly rewarded. The plot/story is pretty weak but has big rewards (player headquarters etc). Combat is good but the AI kinds of falls to pieces at true endgame (think managing 100's of battleships and factories). Getting to the endgame is more fun than the actual endgame. Better than the previous game (Rebirth) but not completely better than X3 i.e. there are too many stupid additions like space highways, wasted time walking around inside ships/boring stations, scanning for blueprints etc. The latest DLC (TImelines) is a piece of crap and they keep making lots of missteps like seasons/multiverse (read other players impact your universe) etc.

Elite Dangerous - You fight/explore/trade. Similar to X4 but without the empre building. No overall story but lots of localised stories with characters etc. I played a bit but never did a full playthrough. I don't like the multiplayer component.

Everspace 2 - You fight/explore/upgrade your ship with drops. Has an overall story. Has some RPG mechanics.

I don't know what I would recommend. I think Everspace 2 if you just want to blast stuff and upgrade your ship/player. X4 if you are a sci-fi nut and fancy your own space empire and want to commit to a lot of complexity.
 
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What are you looking for in a space game? If you want the one that's closest to being an RPG, get Everspace 2. (There's a playable demo if you want to try it first). I've played the early stages of it, and imo it seems pretty good.

The X series is more about trading and economy, but it has plenty of combat too. They're long games that have you slowly building an empire. I've never played Foundations, but it doesn't seem a lot different from the other X games. I know @Zloth has played it a lot, so maybe he can comment here.

Elite Dangerous is an MMO, but I'm pretty sure you can play it without interacting or even seeing other players. Like the X games, it's mostly about combat and accumulating wealth. I don't think it has much, if any, RPG elements. It also requires a third-party account in addition to Steam.
 
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Elite Dangerous is more on the simulation side than the RPG or strategy side. In comparison, the flight in Everspace 2 (that I didn't play) looks very arcade-ish. I think that'd be the main motivation to choose this one.

If that's still the same as when I played it, ED requires a lot of time to get enough money to upgrade ships past the small, early ones. There's a Solo play mode in which you don't encounter anyone else. For me, it was the same as a single-player game. Or at least there was such a mode, but the previous comments make me wonder if it's still there.

At first, you were confined to the spaceship view, like the original Elite game, but they've added the possibility to get on foot with an avatar in the Odyssey extension. I never tried it, but the player reviews aren't good, so it's worth checking that out before going any further.
 
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I like Everspace 2 - good story - many missions - challenging.
 
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There's a Solo play mode in which you don't encounter anyone else. For me, it was the same as a single-player game. Or at least there was such a mode, but the previous comments make me wonder if it's still there.
I haven't played in many many years so I imagine it was before this Solo mode was added. I should give it another shot as I like my space games to be singleplayer so I can enjoy the vastness of space without running into other people!
 
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I haven't played in many many years so I imagine it was before this Solo mode was added. I should give it another shot as I like my space games to be singleplayer so I can enjoy the vastness of space without running into other people!
I played in 2014-2015, so I'm not sure what they did with it after that, but I had quickly checked, and it seemed to be still there.

I think there was a controversy about that, since there was a promise of an offline mode that was revoked before the release of the game.
 
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X Foundations - You fight/explore/trade/build (I think they call it 4X) to build a space empire. Requires a lot of effort from the player but it is mostly rewarded. The plot/story is pretty weak but has big rewards (player headquarters etc). Combat is good but the AI kinds of falls to pieces at true endgame (think managing 100's of battleships and factories). Getting to the endgame is more fun than the actual endgame. Better than the previous game (Rebirth) but not completely better than X3 i.e. there are too many stupid additions like space highways, wasted time walking around inside ships/boring stations, scanning for blueprints etc. The latest DLC (TImelines) is a piece of crap and they keep making lots of missteps like seasons/multiverse (read other players impact your universe) etc.
So it's correct to say that X4 Foundations is another 4X game, like GalCiv and Endless Space ?
 
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So it's correct to say that X4 Foundations is another 4X game, like GalCiv and Endless Space ?
It is not a traditional 4X game (i.e. not turn based like those two examples) but it has elements of it once you get into the middle/end game. You spend a lot of time in management style screens and looking at sector maps. It is still first and foremost a space sim and it plays very differently than traditional 4X games. I have read quite a few reviews and people on Reddit/forums refer to it as having the elements of a 4X game though - like this View: https://www.reddit.com/r/4Xgaming/comments/a2dkmg/would_you_consider_the_x_series_a_4x_game/
 
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X4 is in no way, shape, or form a 4X game. I can see how people might think so looking at the feature list, but it just isn't. For instance, you can take over sectors, but doing so gives very little benefit. You get to name the sector and it turns your color, and you can say what goods are legal and illegal in the sector, but it's nothing like a 4X game where gaining territory makes your empire stronger.

X4 is mostly a sandbox game. It isn't entirely sandbox as there are multiple quests, but it isn't like an RPG where you spend the vast majority of your time doing quests. In this game, you start out doing some where half the point of the quests is to teach you to use various features of the game. Then the quests start throwing things out like "come back when you have a frigate" or "I'll need 400,000 credits to finance the next bit of research" that take several hours to reach.

While you get pretty good rewards for the early and mid-game stuff, the biggest quests take a lot of resources and, as a reward, you'll change the balance of power between the factions. YOU won't get squat (queue Bester from Babylon 5 talking about the pay scale for heroes) other than maybe an achievement and the knowledge you did it. The point of these late game quests isn't to get more powerful, it's just to give you some goals to go after. If you've already figured out your own goals, you're free to ignore them.

When you start out, you have one small ship. You can make money in various ways (shooting Xenon, mining, trading, doing randomly generated missions, ...) and can eventually start hiring crew members and buying more ships. With more powerful ships and weapons, you can make money in more ways. You might have mining ships automatically mining and selling their ore while you go around in your tricked-out fighter doing patrols and whatnot. Eventually, you'll be able to start buying space stations that can take mined materials and build stuff out of them, which sell for more than just the plain rocks. Even more eventually, you can get multiple stations and place them according to regional needs. Still more eventually, you can start building and repairing ships.

There is no real end game in X4, or anything else that's a sandbox style game. What people call the "end game" is when you get so many ships and stations that the game's engine starts to falter, probably because your CPU can't deal with what you've got.

X4 is my favorite single player game ever. Has the game got problems? For sure. It's very much an indie game and, when they release a new version (they are up to 7 now), it always comes with pages of bug fixes as well as some new features. The game is quite complex, which means the GUI is quite complex, too. But there's nothing else like this game anywhere. If you fit in the niche it has carved out, the frustrating bugs are balanced by very rewarding gameplay.

P.S. Oh, beta testing for 7.1 just started!
 
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X4 is in no way, shape, or form a 4X game. I can see how people might think so looking at the feature list, but it just isn't. For instance, you can take over sectors, but doing so gives very little benefit. You get to name the sector and it turns your color, and you can say what goods are legal and illegal in the sector, but it's nothing like a 4X game where gaining territory makes your empire stronger.

X4 is mostly a sandbox game. It isn't entirely sandbox as there are multiple quests, but it isn't like an RPG where you spend the vast majority of your time doing quests. In this game, you start out doing some where half the point of the quests is to teach you to use various features of the game. Then the quests start throwing things out like "come back when you have a frigate" or "I'll need 400,000 credits to finance the next bit of research" that take several hours to reach.

While you get pretty good rewards for the early and mid-game stuff, the biggest quests take a lot of resources and, as a reward, you'll change the balance of power between the factions. YOU won't get squat (queue Bester from Babylon 5 talking about the pay scale for heroes) other than maybe an achievement and the knowledge you did it. The point of these late game quests isn't to get more powerful, it's just to give you some goals to go after. If you've already figured out your own goals, you're free to ignore them.

When you start out, you have one small ship. You can make money in various ways (shooting Xenon, mining, trading, doing randomly generated missions, ...) and can eventually start hiring crew members and buying more ships. With more powerful ships and weapons, you can make money in more ways. You might have mining ships automatically mining and selling their ore while you go around in your tricked-out fighter doing patrols and whatnot. Eventually, you'll be able to start buying space stations that can take mined materials and build stuff out of them, which sell for more than just the plain rocks. Even more eventually, you can get multiple stations and place them according to regional needs. Still more eventually, you can start building and repairing ships.

There is no real end game in X4, or anything else that's a sandbox style game. What people call the "end game" is when you get so many ships and stations that the game's engine starts to falter, probably because your CPU can't deal with what you've got.

X4 is my favorite single player game ever. Has the game got problems? For sure. It's very much an indie game and, when they release a new version (they are up to 7 now), it always comes with pages of bug fixes as well as some new features. The game is quite complex, which means the GUI is quite complex, too. But there's nothing else like this game anywhere. If you fit in the niche it has carved out, the frustrating bugs are balanced by very rewarding gameplay.

P.S. Oh, beta testing for 7.1 just started!
Very informative, Zloth! Thanks a lot!

Lemme ask you a thing about X4: I've read many people saying that the DLC "Timelines" led the game to a wrong direction, that it "ruined the game", and things like that (@bjon045 above is not the first person that I've read who has this opinion).
Have you played X4 with this DLC? What could be so bad about it?
 
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X4 is in no way, shape, or form a 4X game. I can see how people might think so looking at the feature list, but it just isn't. For instance, you can take over sectors, but doing so gives very little benefit. You get to name the sector and it turns your color, and you can say what goods are legal and illegal in the sector, but it's nothing like a 4X game where gaining territory makes your empire stronger.
I'm pretty sure building weapons platforms next to every jump gate in a sector and having patrolling fleets does make your empire stronger ;) I think you have a somewhat narrow view of what some people might consider the endgame in a sandbox game. Have you actually tried to wipe out a faction from the face of the galaxy? The problem is that is when the game starts to break. Things like bullshit station respawning when you have wiped every trace of a faction, resources spawning from nowhere, factions having unlimited credits and other silly immersion breaking "features". The frustrating thing is that none of these things need to be there. Some of these things Egosoft people in there to stop rare edge cases like factions getting wiped out before you meet them but all it does it ruin the endgame experience.

If a game engine "falters" when you order 100 carriers across 5 friendly sectors and when they get there you are missing 1-2 of them then I would normally call that a bug.

Timelines is the worst DLC so far. It would have been better if they just got rid of the "unlocking" features in the sandbox and added the missions (which would require changes) to the actual sandbox. The amount of bugs in the missions is astounding. I can't see how they tested it at all - sure you can get through it (if you lucky) but the quality standard in Timelines sets a new low for the series.
 
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Have you played X4 with this DLC? What could be so bad about it?
I've got it but haven't played it yet. I just started on Egypt in Expeditions: Rome, so it will be a while. (And that's if I go right back to it - not sure if I will or if I go for one of the other games I got in the summer sale at this point.)

If you haven't played any of the X games before, though, I would recommend against getting any of the DLC. All the DLC for this game can easily be added after you've played for several hours. Given how niche the game is, I think it's smart to stick with the cheap version and then add DLC if you find you like the game.
I'm pretty sure building weapons platforms next to every jump gate in a sector and having patrolling fleets does make your empire stronger ;)
You can do both in any sector, owned or not. You might have to pay for the plot for the defense station but, if you're taking over sectors, that's chump change.
I think you have a somewhat narrow view of what some people might consider the endgame in a sandbox game. Have you actually tried to wipe out a faction from the face of the galaxy? The problem is that is when the game starts to break. Things like bullshit station respawning when you have wiped every trace of a faction, resources spawning from nowhere, factions having unlimited credits and other silly immersion breaking "features". The frustrating thing is that none of these things need to be there. Some of these things Egosoft people in there to stop rare edge cases like factions getting wiped out before you meet them but all it does it ruin the endgame experience.
Excuse me? It does not "ruin the endgame experience." As I said, there is no end game. NONE. What it does it makes it impossible to totally wipe out a faction. And who says factions getting completely wiped out is a rare edge case? Have you got some simulation system to run through hundreds of game starts?? I do know the Split often get kicked around by the Xenon as do many of the Teladi sectors - including one with a faction leader.
If a game engine "falters" when you order 100 carriers across 5 friendly sectors and when they get there you are missing 1-2 of them then I would normally call that a bug.
One HUNDRED carriers!? Bjon, have you played this game? You were talking about 100s of battleships and 100s of stations earlier. There's only one ship type that's a battleship in this game: the Asgard. With one single Asgard and three or four destroyers decked out with anti-fighter turrets, I can defeat all the Xenon. It can destroy a Xenon I, which is the biggest ship the Xenon have, in a single shot! It's possible to get killed in an Asgard if you're half asleep or if the Xenon somehow manage to pull off a pincer move and start shooting you with two I's from opposite directions, but even 5 battleships are enough to destroy everything that isn't marked as "plot critical."

Carriers are harder to count because who knows what sort of fighters you have them carrying, whether you're bringing along resupply ships, and so on. But even stupidly outfitted, 20 of them should be enough to wipe out anything the game throws at you. I haven't ever heard of anyone having ships flat out vanish but, even if that were to happen in a case like that, it's hardly a bug worth fixing. You've still got enough to ROFL-stomp whatever is there.
 
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Excuse me? It does not "ruin the endgame experience." As I said, there is no end game. NONE. What it does it makes it impossible to totally wipe out a faction. And who says factions getting completely wiped out is a rare edge case? Have you got some simulation system to run through hundreds of game starts?? I do know the Split often get kicked around by the Xenon as do many of the Teladi sectors - including one with a faction leader.

One HUNDRED carriers!? Bjon, have you played this game? You were talking about 100s of battleships and 100s of stations earlier. There's only one ship type that's a battleship in this game: the Asgard. With one single Asgard and three or four destroyers decked out with anti-fighter turrets, I can defeat all the Xenon. It can destroy a Xenon I, which is the biggest ship the Xenon have, in a single shot! It's possible to get killed in an Asgard if you're half asleep or if the Xenon somehow manage to pull off a pincer move and start shooting you with two I's from opposite directions, but even 5 battleships are enough to destroy everything that isn't marked as "plot critical."

Carriers are harder to count because who knows what sort of fighters you have them carrying, whether you're bringing along resupply ships, and so on. But even stupidly outfitted, 20 of them should be enough to wipe out anything the game throws at you. I haven't ever heard of anyone having ships flat out vanish but, even if that were to happen in a case like that, it's hardly a bug worth fixing. You've still got enough to ROFL-stomp whatever is there.
The whole point of a sandbox is that you can set your own goals - like mine are often conquering the whole galaxy or just certain pesky species - endgame for a player is when you get close to achieving that i.e. you have all the needed tools. You seem fixated on "sectors" which is an artifical construct. Your empire is made up of stations and ships. Building a station expands your empire. Building a ship expands your empire. eXpansion is one of the four components of a 4X i.e. eXplore, eXpand, eXterminate, eXploit. You do all four of those in the X games.

I think my fleet had nearly a hundred carriers and plenty more battleships and normally they would be spread out across the entire game map. In this scenario I amassed the fleet for some joint manuevers, the kind of thing that should be possible in a sandbox game. Almost everyone had been purged except for my favourite fishes. I am referring to ships being killed by the AI and probably a healthy dose of bugs. They do not dissappear. You see them dying in the UI. A battleship in the hands of a player is worth 10x of AI battleships. If you use the wrong command/don't micromanage in the wrong way you can lose a battleship to something that should never happen. As an example - I sent one against a defenceless Xenon WP in Havoc and after 6 hours it had not killed it. I've seen one being destroyed by a Xenon I with it barely getting a single shot off - it literally just spun around in circles and this is with a "5 star" pilot...

I feel obligated to point out the deficencies of the game and there is a reason why it has middling reviews on Steam. It's great when everything works, and it pretty much always does if you are doing simple things or when your empire is still emerging, but when you start wanting to do really cool things like building the largest fleet the universe has ever seen and actually using it then it just falls to pieces. It is great though it you want to get 300+ ships to sit pretty though - thankfully!!

It is still the best space sim/empire building game though.
 
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The whole point of a sandbox is that you can set your own goals - like mine are often conquering the whole galaxy or just certain pesky species - endgame for a player is when you get close to achieving that i.e. you have all the needed tools. You seem fixated on "sectors" which is an artifical construct. Your empire is made up of stations and ships. Building a station expands your empire. Building a ship expands your empire. eXpansion is one of the four components of a 4X i.e. eXplore, eXpand, eXterminate, eXploit. You do all four of those in the X games.
Hmmm.... maybe. Every 4X game I can think of off the top of my head treats expansion as territorial expansion. Modern 4X's let you (or even strongly encourage you) to play "tall" empires that don't expand much, but I've always thought of the term meaning actually getting physically bigger, not just stronger/richer.
I think my fleet had nearly a hundred carriers and plenty more battleships and normally they would be spread out across the entire game map. In this scenario I amassed the fleet for some joint manuevers, the kind of thing that should be possible in a sandbox game. Almost everyone had been purged except for my favourite fishes. I am referring to ships being killed by the AI and probably a healthy dose of bugs. They do not dissappear. You see them dying in the UI. A battleship in the hands of a player is worth 10x of AI battleships. If you use the wrong command/don't micromanage in the wrong way you can lose a battleship to something that should never happen. As an example - I sent one against a defenceless Xenon WP in Havoc and after 6 hours it had not killed it. I've seen one being destroyed by a Xenon I with it barely getting a single shot off - it literally just spun around in circles and this is with a "5 star" pilot...
Oh, I see what you mean now. Yeah, fleet AI is none too good. 7.0 improved it some, but it still isn't great. Too often, the game doesn't really understand just how much more powerful a destroyer/battleship's main guns are compared to the turrets. Plus, the "out of sector" AI shortcuts it has to do can cause craziness, especially if there are lots of things going on. I mean, every time there are patch notes, they are fixing scores of bugs.

The player is way better than the AI at just about everything. You can drive a capital ship from sector to sector far faster than the AI by going through gates with your travel drive on and using the more Newtonian flight model to stay at travel speed doing your turns. You'll fly your fighter far better than the AI doing its "boom & zoom" attack strategy over and over. You'll make much smarter stations, and so on and so forth.
 
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OK guys, I'm trying Everspace 2 demo my CPU shut down twice, right at the start of the gameplay (when we enter the ship with the anemone-like plants).

My PC specs are as below:
OS: Windows 10 64 bits
Processor: AMD Ryzen 5 5600 3.70 GHz 8-Core Processor
Motherboard: X470 Aorus Gaming 5 WiFi
GPU: AMD Radeon RX 6700 XT 12GB
RAM: Rise Mode Z 32GB (2x16) 3200MHz DDR4 CL16
Power Supply: Corsair 650W

My CPU fan profile is default.

I want to raise the fan speed when the CPU temp gets to a certain threshold. What program can I use in order to best do that ?
 
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My CPU fan profile is default.

I want to raise the fan speed when the CPU temp gets to a certain threshold. What program can I use in order to best do that ?
I would just set it to 100% in bios first and run the demo and see if it fixes your problem.
 
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OK guys, I'm trying Everspace 2 demo my CPU shut down twice, right at the start of the gameplay (when we enter the ship with the anemone-like plants).

My PC specs are as below:
OS: Windows 10 64 bits
Processor: AMD Ryzen 5 5600 3.70 GHz 8-Core Processor
Motherboard: X470 Aorus Gaming 5 WiFi
GPU: AMD Radeon RX 6700 XT 12GB
RAM: Rise Mode Z 32GB (2x16) 3200MHz DDR4 CL16
Power Supply: Corsair 650W

My CPU fan profile is default.

I want to raise the fan speed when the CPU temp gets to a certain threshold. What program can I use in order to best do that ?
To be honest that usually happens if either (a) the cpu fan is broken or (b) the cpu fan is not seated correctly which can happened if this is a shipped system and it had a hard bump or it wasn't assembled correctly. It is pretty hard to make the cpu actually overheat (auto shutdown) due to heat even if the fan is only running 50%.

Also it could be a psu issue - you can test this by running the cpu very hard - try prime95 and run the stress test - without using the gpu. This will maximize the heat of the cpu (prime95 in stress mode will execute chain computation on all cores - i use it for testing memory and heat threshold) without using power for the gpu.
 
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I would just set it to 100% in bios first and run the demo and see if it fixes your problem.
I tried this and the CPU shut down once again, exactly in the same place/situation it did the first time: when I pressed the 'F' key to transfer the contents that were inside some kind of container to my ship (think of it as a chest in a traditional RPG, where you press 'F' to get the 'loot').
When I pressed the 'F' key the CPU turned off (I'm deducing this because the Wraith Prism's fan lights turned off and the fan stopped), the display also turned off and showed a "No Signal" message but all the mobo lights didn't (yes, they're still turned on).
When that happens, I can only turn the PC again if I press the PSU power button to 'off' position and then turn it 'on' again. Pressing the normal Power button in the case doesn't turn the PC on.
 
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To be honest that usually happens if either (a) the cpu fan is broken or (b) the cpu fan is not seated correctly which can happened if this is a shipped system and it had a hard bump or it wasn't assembled correctly. It is pretty hard to make the cpu actually overheat (auto shutdown) due to heat even if the fan is only running 50%.
I don't think the fan is broken because when I set it to Full Speed in the BIOS, it immediately increases its speed up to 3,000 RPM max, and I also can hear the normal noise that a fan at 100% speed usually does.

Also it could be a psu issue - you can test this by running the cpu very hard - try prime95 and run the stress test - without using the gpu. This will maximize the heat of the cpu (prime95 in stress mode will execute chain computation on all cores - i use it for testing memory and heat threshold) without using power for the gpu.
It could be a PSU issue, yes, but my 650W power supply has the recommended wattage that AMD specified for the 6700XT GPU.

Anyway, I'll run the stress test to confirm or rule out the hypothesis of a PSU with issues. Either that or the game is very poorly optimized.
 
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