Distant Worlds is a pausable real-time 4X space strategy game. 4X is a gaming term that stands for explore (the surrounding areas), expand (the territory), exploit (resources), and exterminate (rival players). This application features a vast universe with 1400 star systems and up to fifty thousand planets and other celestial bodies, all within a single game. As the game progresses, players will get to encounter alien colonies and interact with pirates and space monsters. They will also have a chance to explore gas clouds, black holes, and galactic storms as they go on doing tasks.
At the beginning of the game, a player is prompted to select a race to belong to. The game offers over twenty races, each with their own unique traits. The player will also choose starting technology levels, extent of expansion, flag design, and even the corruption rate in the 6 government types he will choose. Players can also choose to set a game time or indicator of game conclusion.
The game lets users set automated functions, such as a tax rate, so the player does not have to manually look into it every time. The user can also choose to receive prompt regarding tasks so the user can opt to do a particular authoritative action.
Players can view the bigger picture of their planets and the neighboring planets by zooming out using the mouse’s scroll. A mini-map at the bottom right of the screen, as well as viewing buttons, can also be used to see the game’s distant worlds.