This article is considered accurate for the current version (2.3) of the game.
Spaceborne aliens are spacefaring forms of life which will likely be the first aliens that new spacefarers will encounter. Every difficulty level above Ensign increases the power of Leviathans and Marauder Empires, with the exact raised stats varying for each. Other Spaceborne Aliens are not affected by the difficulty level.
Space creatures are entities which may not even classify as ships or life in the common meaning of the words. They generally inhabit a certain area of space and are seldom seen away from it. Upon discovery a special project will be added to the situation log, which when completed will allow an empire to deal with them in three ways:
- Researching unlocks a special project for detailed research that will grant a choice between an empire modifier and possibly a creature technology.
- Hunting will grant a +33% damage bonus empire modifier towards that type of Space Creature, and resources rewards upon killing them. If the creatures cannot be pacified the option is available to all empires, otherwise it is only available to Militarist, Xenophobe or Genocidal empires.
- Pacify will unlock a special project that costs 5000 Physics research and allows an empire to turn the space creatures permanently non-hostile and unlock the ability to research all special components the creatures use. Only 2 of the 5 Space Creatures can be pacified. Pacified space creatures will not attack even in retaliation. This option is available to Pacifist or Xenophile Empires.
If killed, space creatures will keep respawning in their home system unless an empire's sensor range covers the system.
- Nomads are replaced by Caravaneers if MegaCorp DLC is enabled.
The Nomads, or Namarians as they call themselves, are a passive millennia old intergalactic race with no homeworld, forever traveling the void in their starships. Once they establish communications the nomads will act as a sort of "bridge" between the player and unknown alien empires, and the player is likely to soon be barraged by a large number of "Communications Established" events as more and more alien empires are discovered by the nomads, and, by extension, the player. They travel from system to system and their stay in the galaxy is temporary and will eventually set sail for another one. Events related to them can take place during their stay.
The date when and if the Nomads arrive is rolled at game start, with the following chances:
- 20% chance to appear after 20 years + 100 days
- 25% chance to appear after 40 years + 200 days
- 25% chance to appear after 55 years + 275 days
- 30% chance to never appear
When their time is due they will spawn in a random Rim System that has no ship in it and that no empire has a intel level better than low. Upon appearing, they will decide the mid point and endpoint of their journey. On their journey Nomads will perform an action when entering a system. Those actions depends on if the system has an owner and what the relationship with the owner is.
If the system is owned by an empire that has neither contact nor is hostile to them, they will start orbiting a random planet in the system until contact is established. The player is not capable of deciphering their communications but contact will always be established by them after 100 days. After contact is established they will send the owner a request. If they enter another system owned by the same empire they will roll for a request again. Each interaction has the following chances:
- 30% - Ask to leave some pops on an owned planet within your borders
- x0 If the system owner does not have a colonized Dry planet within borders or is a Hive Mind
- x0.75 if they already left pops before
- x1.5 if any form of Xenophile, Egalitarian or Spiritualist Empire and not already left pops before
- x0.3 if Slavery policy is set to Allowed
- 30% - Ask for a planet to settle on, forming a new empire
- 30% - Sell 5 or 15 Cruisers
- 10% - Move on with no request
If the system has no owner, and neither hostile, mid- or endpoint of their journey, they will perform a peaceful action with the following chances:
- 10% - Build new Ships
- x10 if under 3k Fleet Power
- x5 if under 5k Fleet Power
- x0 if over 10k or has the have the ship building lockout
- 80% - Pick a random planet and wait in orbit for 30–50 days. Afterwards, they have a 25% chance to move on and 75% chance to pick another planet in the system to repeat it
- x0 if less than 1.5k Fleet Power
- 10% - Move on without doing anything
While the Nomads are inherently peaceful, a fight can be picked in order to get access to their technology. Nomads are easy prey but their technology is just average by midgame, making this rarely useful. The nomad fleet consists of the following:
|20 Protectors||3 Ark Ships|
|Available only with the Leviathans DLC enabled.|
Enclaves are neutral NPC spawned factions. They do not own any planets but consist of large enclave stations. They primarily exist to be interacted with via Diplomacy Menu using the "Others" filter. There are 3 types of enclaves: Artisans, Curators and Traders. Each of them has between 2 or 3 basic interactions and one or two restricted interactions that can only be used after an Opinion of at least 50 is reached. Their maximum Opinion is 100 and an empire builds opinion with them by using their services or having starbases in their systems. The enclave Opinion is tracked wholly via the trust mechanic and no other Diplomacy bonuses or penalties apply.
The primary resource for interacting with enclaves is energy. All actions are repeatable but some of the actions also have an increasing cost. The price increases as an empire's population goes past certain thresholds:
During the renewal request after a modifier runs out, the player will be able to renew the deal for a sum of energy credits which scales with the number of the empire's population. With Trader enclaves you will be asked how many monthly units (of the respective rare resource sold by the enclave) you want to buy.
||Research aid||scales with population|
|Mysteries of the Universe - not known||300|
|Mysteries of the Universe - how to defeat||1000|
Once per 10 years
|Establish Think Tank||Allow the construction of Curator Think Tanks buildings in enclave system starbases||50|
|Recruit scientist||Gain a level 5 Scientist with the Curator trait|| 50|
|Infinity mystery||Gain 500 Engineering research||Mirror of Knowledge modifier|
||Become patron||Gain the Patron of the Arts modifier for 10 years (+10% Monthly Unity). Becoming a patron also allows Patron Events to trigger:||scales with population|
|Commission art piece||
Does not own 5
|Found Art College||Allow the construction of Art College buildings in enclave system starbases||50|
||Strategic Resource deal||Provides a unit of a rare resource for 10 years. The resource amount and can be scaled up to 5 times. The higher the volume, the faster Opinion increases. Resources vary based on which specific trader Enclave is encountered:|| 500 per unit|
10 monthly per unit
|Seek expertise||Gain an immortal level 5 Governor with the Enclave Trader trait (once per enclave)|| 50|
- Curator strength opinion
Curator enclaves can always be asked how would the player's fleets fare against the leviathans. Depending on the total fleet power they will give the following replies:
- Below 5k: Poorly. Very poorly. Wait a second, you're not actually thinking of...? My goodness, with the ships you have? It... it would be a slaughter!
- Between 5k and 15k: I would strongly advise against it. Your attacks would likely be more of an annoyance than a threat.
- Between 15k and 30k: Hmmm... yes... yes, I suppose you might actually stand a chance. If you combined your entire fleet... it would not be an easy victory, mind you, but one that is at least within the realm of possibility.
- Over 30k: Yours is a mighty fleet, comparable to some of the greatest armadas recorded in the annals of the Curator Order. Victory is certainly within your reach.
Note that their advice is inaccurate on the highest difficulties and you require an even stronger fleet.
While enclaves will never become hostile to any empire except in retaliation, they can be attacked like any neutral entity. With around 7k fleet power and highest level weapons they are no easy prey but various rewards can be salvaged from their remnants, depending on the type of enclave destroyed. Each enclave station is equipped with the following:
|Curator station||Artisan station||Trader enclave|
Enclave stations do not drop debris for salvage. Attacking a curator or artisan enclave will make every enclave station of the same type unavailable for trade.
Destroying a curator or trader enclave station brings a small and temporary opinion reduction towards most other empires. Destroying an artisan enclave will not due to their duplicitous reputation.
Leviathans are extremely powerful Spaceborne aliens found in specific, predetermined systems and rivalling moons in size and mass. They are marked with a skull icon both in the fleet power box and on the galactic map. Each leviathan has a unique event chain. While one can just stumble over one during exploration, they can also be found with the help of the curator enclave. Leviathans have an immense amount of health and should only be engaged mid-late game.
Leviathans get various bonuses to make them stronger based on the game difficulty. AI empires will only attack leviathans if their fleet power is at least 40k.
|Available only with the Distant Stars DLC enabled.|
The Enigmatic Cache, or BALDOR as it calls itself, is a tubular entity that will emerge from any Gateway or L-Gate once the mid-game year is reached and set course for the nearest empire that is not at war. If the Enigmatic Cache is attacked it will instantly teleport away from the system.
Once the Enigmatic Cache enters an empire's borders it will start orbiting each one of the empire's colonies for a month. As long as it orbits a colony it gives it a +30% Research Output modifier. The first time it happens the empire will get the option of issuing a special project to study it or leave it alone for 50 Influence. The special project costs 2500 Engineering research and finishing it refunds 250 research and grants an L-Gate insight. Once all colonies have been scanned the Enigmatic Cache will set course for the nearest empire and repeat the process.
After all colonies in the galaxy have been scanned, the Enigmatic Cache will head to the capital of an empire whose Technology Level is not exactly rated as Superior to that of any other empire and that is not a Machine Intelligence. After entering orbit the Enigmatic Cache will attempt to communicate. Accepting will have the Enigmatic Cache request to uplift the main species via a special project that takes 2 years.
Around 4 months into the project is started the empire will be notified that the Enigmatic Cache is deteriorating and bring the following options:
- Abort the uplift, causing the Enigmatic Cache to teleport away.
- Ignore it. Once the project is complete there is a 75% chance the main species gains the Somewhat Uplifted trait and -20% Happiness for 10 years and a 25% chance the main species gains the Uplifted trait and -10% Happiness for 10 years. The Enigmatic Cache will also remain in orbit above the capital and permanently give its Research Output modifier.
- Issue a special project to repair the Enigmatic Cache with a construction ship. Once the uplift is complete the main species will gain the Uplifted trait. The Enigmatic Cache will also remain in orbit above the capital and permanently give its Research Output modifier.
Note: The traits do not give unique bonuses to leaders despite the tooltips saying they do.
Note: An Overwhelming technology rating does not prevent selection for uplifting, despite being a higher disparity than Superior.