Stardock’s and Oxide Games’ high-performance PC real-time strategy game, Ashes of the Singularity, and the standalone expansion, Ashes of the Singularity: Escalation, have been on parallel development paths since the expansion launched in November of last year. The developers’ intent was that the base game would be the more casual-friendly title, while the expansion would focus on the hard-core RTS audience.
According to Stardock’s Brad Wardell the games’ code will be merged with the next update, making things simpler for the developers. The benefit for base game owners is that they will get most of the quality-of-life improvements the expansion brought. But that’s not all! People who participated in the early access program for the base game will actually get Escalation added to their Steam libraries for free. Owners of Escalation will get all future DLC for free, if they purchase the game before the next update. Founders, the brave souls that pre-purchased Ashes to get the base game and all future DLC, will get the sequel to Escalation for free.
Thus, putting Escalation and the base game on equal footing, we can see which game has more players. Ashes or Escalation. I know you hard-core RTS players are convinced that Escalation will win. Don’t be so sure. I love them both but it’s Ashes, not Escalation, that my friends tend to prefer for LAN parties due to the relative simplicity.
Ashes of the Singularity’s 1.51 update and Escalation’s 2.1 update is scheduled to be released on February 16. The free upgrades will be available on that date to qualifying owners.