NOW AVAILABLE: Sins of a Solar Empire II - Tech Preview 3, Multiplayer Update

Published on Tuesday, February 14, 2023 By Tatiora In Sins II News

Sins of a Solar Empire II Adds Multiplayer to Technical Preview, Adds Visual Enhancements 

Take over an existing AI empire in a multiplayer game or start fresh matches via game codes, searchable lobbies, or quick join options. See the full changelog


Stardock and Ironclad Games released a new update to the Technical Preview for Sins of a Solar Empire II today. The update adds the highly anticipated multiplayer feature, new ship models, an updated UI for the Research Tree, and improved textures for capital ships along with other additions. 

The introduction of multiplayer is a core stage in Sins of a Solar Empire II’s development and, as such, Stardock and Ironclad are eager to get feedback from players as they continuously improve upon it. This multiplayer experience is merely the tip of the iceberg, but eager Sins players can get a solid feel for what the new engine brings to the table. 



For instance, players can now jump into an existing multiplayer game and take the reins from an AI empire or a friend who has to leave. This gives players a lot of flexibility, especially as competitive matches get longer and longer. Additionally, players can set up private games and invite friends (or enemies) via game codes. 

"We want to thank everyone who has been playing the Technical Preview and providing feedback, but we’ve heard you all loud and clear: You want multiplayer. Everyone has been waiting for the chance to wage war against each other, and now they can,” said Brian Clair, Director of Publishing for Stardock. “Giving players the option to jump in to take over an AI empire is such a fantastic addition. Internally, we’ve had colleagues jump into ongoing matches and completely annihilate people who thought they had a sure victory. We can’t wait to see how our community takes to this feature and it's only the beginning!” 



While not final, many ships have received visual upgrades and new models have replaced the TEC Ogrov Torpedo Cruiser, Pirate Rogue, Corsair, and Pillager ships. Pirate Hideouts also have a new model in this update. For a complete list of changes, see the changelog below.

Following in the footsteps of its critically acclaimed predecessor, this highly anticipated sequel will seamlessly blend real-time strategy and 4X gameplay to deliver a grand space conflict. Equal parts immersive and intense, Sins of a Solar Empire II introduces a whole new level of detail and raises the bar on what it means to become the ruler of a vast space empire.  

The Sins of a Solar Empire II pre-order, which grants entry into the Early Access Technical Preview, is now available at Players can also add the game to their wishlist, follow updates, and learn more about features as they are revealed. 



Technical Preview 3 Changelog


  • Added multiplayer fundamentals:

    • Create/Join lobby

      • Public and Private: When toggled to Private, others must join via game code.

    • Join/Rejoin with game code (auto-created by the system - snag in-game via Options menu)

    • Save/Load multiplayer games - only 1 player needs a local save.

    • Rejoin games-in-progress.

      • If you drop from a game, you can rejoin it in progress without having to load a save game.

      • If you’re playing with AIs and a human wants to join in, they will replace an AI player and take over their empire!



  • Added attack, defend and attention pings.

  • Press the 'g' key to load the ping cursor.

    • Pings can also be accessed from the chat menu (Enter).

  • Iterate through the ping types by pressing 'g' or the mouse button repeatedly.

  • Pings are sent to your last target in the chat menu (e.g., all, allies, specific player, etc.).



  • Added a ‘Toggle Hold Garrison’ button to the Advanced Planet Actions menu.

    • A red button means garrison units are on hold and will not leave the garrison gravity well.

    • A blue button means garrison units are not on hold and will roam to attack/defend nearby gravity wells.

  • Garrisons are now on hold by default, so they won’t wander without permission.

  • Garrison units ordered by the player to move to a foreign gravity well will stay in that gravity well until there are no more enemy targets (and will then return home).

  • Fixed the regular “hold position” order from being ignored by garrison units under certain circumstances.

  • Added garrison unit underlay when unit is in icon form.

  • Added garrison prefix to the unit name.

  • Fixed garrisons not checking unit limits.


Derelict Loot

  • Capture progress now slowly decays if the capturer leaves the capture area.

  • Capture progress indicators now use the capturing player’s color.

  • Units from another player that enter a decaying capture area accelerate the decay.

  • Added capture time remaining to the derelict tooltip.



  • Pirates will now auto-raid the lowest bidding player(s) in the pirate auction.

    • If there are multiple tied lowest bidders, they will all be raided.

  • The highest bidding player still wins the auction reward to send a pirate raid at their discretion.

  • Added penalized bid amount to the auction tooltip.

  • Added “Raid supply” line to pirate raid auctions and rewards.


Misc. Gameplay

  • TEC players now start with a Retrofit Bay at their homeworld.

  • Updated capital ship armor leveling curve.

  • Fixed culture from not working properly.

  • Added auto-queuing of research tiers when conducting research.

  • Fixed alliance offer assets and exotics not being properly refunded in all cases.

  • Defeated players now reset their auction bid state so they cannot win an auction.

  • Added charge duration capability to weapons.

  • Fixed units sometimes breaking out of ‘hold position’ order.

  • Added check that there are at least two teams to allow starting a game.

  • Fixed starbase tradeports.

  • Fixed AI picking a starbase as a desired factory to build at the start of the game.

  • Fixed strikecraft not using hangar points.

  • Fixed dead units from instantly losing their momentum.

  • Changed “Unbreachable Hull” research to unlock the last structural integrity component rather than the first.

  • Fixed missing burst pattern and misuse of phasemissile for TEC missiles.

  • Removed asteroid as valid location for Porous Core and Rusted Core planet bonuses/penalties.

  • Fixed Missile Barrage not benefitting from Precision Targeting tech.

  • Removed Akkan as a valid tradeport destination target (but he can still target other tradeport destinations).

  • Delinked Missile Barrage from a target that phase jumps.

  • Made most NPCs friendly with one another.



  • Improved meshes and textures of: Kol, Sova, Marza, Dunov, Harkca, Javelis, Prova, Ogrov, Bomber and Fighter.

  • Added new Pirate Base mesh.

  • Added new Pirate ship meshes.

  • Added new Neruda mesh.

  • Added new Sova pod mesh.


Particle Effects

  • Fixed infinite effects bug (e.g., pirate flare effects).

  • Fixed capital ship level up effects not playing.

  • Fixed beam weapon effect orientation.

  • Separated beam core and glow tiling animation rates.

  • Added intermediate update to Kol beam effect.

  • Added PSIDAR effect.

  • Added Hoshiko EMP effects.

  • Fixed various death sequence effect references.



  • Updated a variety of muzzle and impact sfx.

  • Rebalanced various weapon sfx.

  • Rebalanced various engine sfx.

  • Updated various explosion sfx.


Research User Interface

  • Added new, thicker research completed border.

  • Added new research frames.

  • Added completed research frame glow.

  • Added new research_has_external_link icons (e.g, pre-requisite).

  • Added first batch of new research icons.

  • Improved research completed notification tooltip.

  • Added research domain specific icon to insufficient_research_tier queries.

  • Added research queue claws.

  • Added research tooltip title pictures.

  • Removed research prerequisites from purchase tooltip in certain states.

  • Added uppercase research names for tooltip title.

  • Added flash to research tier buttons when acquired.

  • Added glow to research being unlocked or completed.

  • Added states to research link arrows.

  • Added completed overlay to research tier buttons.

  • Added research button outline state for unavailable.

  • Added glow to research field header labels.

  • Fixed research tree field windows not using full width.

  • Added alternating colors to research fields.

  • Added research field seperators.

  • Added alpha and disabled states to research tier buttons.

  • Added alpha fade out of research subject icons that don’t have unlocked tier.

  • Added research field picture stretch to fit.

  • Removed research field icons.

  • Added research domain details to tooltips.

  • Added research level indicators to domain buttons.

  • Added build overlay to research tier button.

  • Fixed production window showing over research window.

  • Improved research tier button tooltip title.

  • Added display of research needed in future to purchase tooltip.

  • Added auto-acquire previous research tiers when acquiring high level tier.

  • Added auto-acquire research tiers to all purchases.

  • Added research acquire_tier time tooltip section.

  • Changed research field names to be all uppercase.

  • Fixed some research window margin values.

  • Added new research tier button backgrounds.

  • Fixed research domain active glow only showing when mouseovered.

  • Removed hover flare glow from top of research buttons.

  • Improved waiting for research tier tooltips.

  • Added unlocked weapons to research tooltips.


Exotics User Interface

  • Fixed HUD exotic_factory_count_window not using proper count.

  • Fixed can build exotics not going false during last exotic factory death.

  • Fixed exotic counts of 0 showing up in alliance offers.

  • Covered building exotic buttons to same style as research buttons.

  • Added exotic type name to missing exotic error messages.

  • Improved can_make_purchase queries to show missing exotic, not that a factory is needed.

  • Added display of dominant missing exotic icon instead of generic icon.


Diplomacy User Interface

  • Added offer expired error.

  • Added alliance offer details to diplomacy window tooltips.

  • Added offer duration to create/accept offer button tooltip.

  • Added team icons to diplomacy window.

  • Improved visibility of offer being accepted.

  • Added not_included_in_offer transparency.

  • Improved alliance offer tooltip anchoring.


Auction User Interface

  • Changed exotic bid button to generate an error status message if the player has none of the required exotics.

  • Changed auction bid button tooltip titles to include the names of the asset and exotic used in their respective bid.

  • Added penalized bid amount to auction tooltip.

  • Added “Raid supply” line to pirate raid auctions and rewards.


Misc User Interface

  • Changed pan direction default setting.

  • Improved chat text readability.

  • Improved cursor picking.

  • Added culture change indicators to planet icon.

  • Added blinking “upkeep” indicator to planet icon.

  • Fixed notifications of “never detected” planets.

  • Added player icons to notifications to indicate context.

  • Fixed notification size and layout to handle other sizes.

  • Fixed missing waiting_for_factory_to_be_built tooltip icon.

  • Fixed jittering of unit group bandboxing when one unit is selected.

  • Fixed jittering unit group tooltip.

  • Added tooltip for bandboxed units.

  • Improved purchase section of starting tooltips.

  • Improved visibility of disabled lobby options.

  • Improved player tooltip section spacing.

  • Fixed camera focus target being lost on unit leaving gravity well.

  • Camera now detaches from focus target when panning.

  • Disabled rendering of planet bonus and artifact windows if empty.

  • Fixed new ability buttons not rendering passive abilities properly.

  • Added big build extractor buttons to colonized planet window.

  • Unified all build structure buttons to use pips.

  • Fixed “not ok” planet track upgrade icon not showing in tooltip.

  • Added status icons to planet track buttons.

  • Added HUD icon button pips.

  • Fixed tooltip window being stuck in huge size when changing dpi.

  • Fixed cannot build unit icon showing up too often.

  • Added waiting for supply icon.

  • Fixed assert in unit_items when attempting to sell a planet bonus (you can’t sell planet bonuses).

  • Added standardized waiting/cannot build icon style to tier buttons.

  • Updated scroll bars.

  • Added drag and drop player slots between teams in lobby.

  • Split planet components and civilian structure views in colonized planets window.

  • Improved tradeport tooltip.

  • Improved one,two decimal place text rendering.

  • Added ability to refund fully built items.

  • Added display of refund amount on tooltips.

  • Aligned tooltip value column when label is too large.

  • Improved purchase tooltips.

  • Updated alliance type tooltip icons.

  • Removed flare from planet bonus buttons.

  • Added new metal and crystal asteroid icons.

  • Fixed Military Orbital Structures string.

  • Fixed structure tooltip adding culture_side_effects when base provided culture is 0.



  • Added auto-scaling of dpi to fit minimum dimensions.

  • Fixed dpi setting providing bad scaling values.

  • Fixed running out of memory crash bug.