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This article is for the PC version of Stellaris only.

The map is a celestial map used for a graphical overview of the "galaxy". During the game the player can use the map to obtain different types of Information, like other Empires, hostile fleets, star systems and their planets. After exploring a star system, the player can also see resources or habitable planets of a star system.

The galaxy map is what the player will be watching most often for ongoing developments and changes to the star systems. When starting a game, the galaxy of the map is procedurally generated, with its size and shape optionally specified, as well as the number of (normal) AI empires. Sizes currently range from 150 to 1000 stars.[1] The amount of AI empires specified only affects how many AI controlled empires are generated from the start, as a lot more will spring into existence during your game.

Galaxy variants

Three different type of galaxies are available.

Type Description
Spiral 2.png Spiral galaxy
(2 arms)
Spiral galaxies (2 arms and 4 arms) have the stars placed in arms that extend out in a spiral pattern. A spiral galaxy provides an interesting geography, with voids between the arms that might be difficult to pass in a straight line.
Expansion is limited to spiral arms.
Spiral 4.png Spiral galaxy
(4 arms)
Elliptical.png Elliptical galaxy Elliptical galaxies have the stars placed in a ellipsoidal pattern , resulting in a more evenly distributed geography.
Expansion is mostly unhindered.
Ring Galaxy.png Ring galaxy Ring galaxies have the stars placed in a ring shape around the galaxy core, resulting in clockwise or counterclockwise fronts within the ring, making it easier to cut other empires off from the rest of the galaxy than it is with any other shape.
Expansion is limited to a clockwise or counter-clockwise direction.

Star classes

A star is a celestial body that composes the center of a star system and influences the generation of the solar system. They are classified based on their spectral characteristics. Less common stars also have a negative effect on all ships in the system, making certain tactics less effective in battle.

Most systems have only one star but a few have two or three stars, either orbiting each other with the planets around them or far enough from each other that a few planets orbit each star. The effects and chances for habitable planets stack in binary and trinary systems.

Type Potential resources Habitable planets chance Description
B Star.png Class B
  • Energy Credits.png Energy
  • Physics Research Physics
-40% The large class B main-sequence stars are very bright and blue. Although somewhat rare, the luminosity of these stars make them among the most visible to the naked eye.
A Star.png Class A
  • Energy Credits.png Energy
  • Physics Research Physics
-40% These relatively young white or bluish-white main-sequence stars are typically among the most visible to the naked eye. They are large and rotate very quickly, but will eventually evolve into slower and cooler red giants.
F Star.png Class F
  • Energy Credits.png Energy
  • Physics Research Physics
F-type stars are fairly large and often referred to as yellow-white dwarves. Although they often emit significant amounts of UV radiation, their wide habitable zones have a good chance of supporting life-bearing worlds.
G Star.png Class G
  • Energy Credits.png Energy
  • Physics Research Physics
Often referred to as yellow dwarves, G-type stars actually range in color from white to slightly yellow. Main-sequence stars fuse hydrogen for roughly 10 billion years before they expand and become red giants. Although their lifespans are shorter than K-type stars, worlds inside the habitable zone of a G star often enjoy optimal conditions for the development of life.
K Star.png Class K
  • Energy Credits.png Energy
  • Physics Research Physics
These main-sequence stars, sometimes referred to as orange dwarves, are a fairly common sight. They are stable on the main-sequence for up to 30 billion years, meaning that worlds orbiting a K-type star have a longer than average window to evolve life.
M Star.png Class M
  • Energy Credits.png Energy
  • Physics Research Physics
-60% The most common stars in the universe, often referred to as red dwarves. Their low luminosity means they are difficult to observe with the naked eye from afar. Although they typically have an extremely long lifespan, red dwarves emit almost no UV light resulting in unfavorable conditions for most forms of life.
M Red Giant Star.png Class M Red Giant
  • Energy Credits.png Energy
  • Physics Research Physics
-90% With a large radius and comparatively low surface temperature, red giants are stars of moderate mass in a late stage of stellar evolution. Their expanded stellar atmosphere and high luminosity make for distant habitable zone orbits.
T Star.png Class T Brown Dwarf
  • Energy Credits.png Energy
  • Physics Research Physics
-60% Brown dwarfs are substellar objects that lack the mass to sustain hydrogen fusion. Roughly the size of large gas giants, they have a much greater density. Their low luminosity and comparatively small heat generation means that planets orbiting them are unlikely to support life.
Pulsar.png Pulsar
  • Engineering Research Engineering
  • Physics Research Physics
-100% Pulsars are highly magnetized neutron stars that emit beams of electromagnetic radiation. As the star rotates, the radiation beam is only visible when it is pointing directly at the observer. This results in a very precise interval of pulses, which sometimes is so exact that it can be used to measure the passage of time with extreme accuracy. The radiation emitted by pulsars interferes with deflector technology, rendering ship and station shields inoperable.
  • Mod ship shield hp mult.png +100% Shield Nullification
Black Hole.png Black Hole
  • Engineering Research Engineering
  • Physics Research Physics
  • Dark Matter.png Dark Matter
-100% Typically formed as a result of the collapse of a very massive star at the end of its life cycle, black holes have extremely strong gravity fields that prevent anything - including light - from escaping once the event horizon has been crossed. The gravitational waves emitted by black holes interfere with FTL drives, making it harder for ships to escape from combat.
  • Mod ship disengagement.png +50% Disengagement Chance Reduction
  • Mod ship speed mult.png +50% Emergency FTL Jump Cooldown
  • Observatory.png Allows starbases to construct the Black Hole Observatory building.
Neutron Star.png Neutron Star
  • Engineering Research Engineering
  • Physics Research Physics
-100% These incredibly dense stellar remnants are sometimes created when a massive star suffers a rapid collapse and explodes in a supernova. Although their diameter is typically as little as ten kilometers, their mass is many times greater than an average G-type star. The gravitational waves and radiation emitted by Neutron Stars must be carefully navigated around, slowing the sublight speed of ships.
  • Mod ship speed mult.png +50% Sublight Speed Reduction

Star systems

A star system is a grouping of planets, asteroids, and other features within a singular system which is isolated from other star systems. A solar system is the second level of territory size within Stellaris, the first being Planets, Moons, Asteroids, or any other objects within a star system. Owning territory of a star system can be accomplished by colonizing a body within the star system, expanding the Empires Borders over the star system, or by building Frontier outposts within the systems for a player to expand his/her borders. Having control of a star system permits the ability to expand by constructing orbital objects such as resource extractors, and allows colonizing habitual planets.

Every system with a certain star class has a certain specificity; you will, for example, have a hard time finding habitable planets close to a black hole. Within any star system, there can be anywhere from 10 to 15 planets.[2]


Alongside stars and planets, nebulae feature heavily on the galactic map; these large accumulations of interstellar gas and dust tend to have fewer habitable planets within them, but the celestial bodies within them also have significantly higher chances of yielding rare strategic resources that can be difficult to find anywhere else.

Nebulae are always visible on the galaxy map, and have unique names such as Grasping Claw Nebula and Orantes Shroud. They also reduce the speed of Warp and Hyperdrive FTL travel by 30%.

The combination of strategic resource availability and FTL speed penalty make them a significant strategic element on the galactic map, as a well-positioned nebula can provide a buffer against enemy incursions, or a tempting war target for opportunists seeking to seize the resource deposits.

Visual cues

There are some subtle visual cues in the Galaxy Map that could help you manage your empire. One of the more useful late game cues is star systems with their titles in dark gray. This is to let you know that the system has not been surveyed. This is useful because you may inherit a system as part of a war, but if you do not survey it, it may still contain perviously unseen hidden treasures, including potentially habitable planets.


Game concepts
Governance EmpireEthicsGovernmentCivicsPoliciesEdictsLeaderFactionsPopulationSpecies rightsEconomyTechnologyTraditionsCrime
Exploration ExplorationMapSpeciesAnomalyEventsFTLFallen empirePre-FTL speciesPrecursorsSpaceborne aliens
Colonization ColonizationCelestial bodyPlanetary featuresPlanetary managementDistrictsBuildingsShipStarbaseMegastructures
Diplomacy DiplomacyTradeSubject empireFederationsGalactic communityAI personalities
Warfare WarfareSpace warfareLand warfareShip designer
Others TraitsTerraformingPop modificationSlaveryCrisisPreset empiresAI playersEaster eggs