Unofficial Stardrive 1 patches.

  • Discord Chat feel free to drop by with questions, requests, problems or say hi.
  • ChangeLog and discussion on Facebook.
  • Dev project Tracker. See what we are working on and have completed.
  • Download Notifications on Twitter
  • Steam Forum here.

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I just want to play the mod Crunchy!

Great! The process is simply:

  • Downloads will be more uptodate from HERE
  • Run the downloaded exe. Adjust the default install location if needed.
  • run stardrive from steam as you normally would.
  • If you want to try out the conventional mods like techlevel and such download and run the mod superpack and then download and install latest stable or unstable test.

Stardrive BlackBox

Let's play .

Feature list for Latest Stable Radical Elements build. (there is more than this I just dont have it all written down). Recommend getting and installing the latest mod pack and then latest stable test.

General Game Things

  • Larger Maps.
  • Many many crash fixes.
  • troop management improvements.
  • troops will autoland on planets you send them to. orbit a planet with a shift right click.
  • planets will auto resupply troop ships.
  • solar system info expansion will show special resource marker and player troop counts.
  • Large Access Aware exe to reduce out of memory issues.
  • money based on population rather than production.
  • Much better ship targeting code.
  • Reduced volume when warping and launching troops.
  • full control over audio volume.
  • running without force full sim will use weapon ranges and fire arcs and beams will use power correctly. this allows a more realistic combat model when not using force full sim.
  • mouse back button will select the previously selected ship. so you can select a ship go to an area you want to move the ship to. hit the mouse back button and move it.
  • center mouse will zoom and lock to the select item.
  • mouse wheel will zoom in select ship.
  • single tap a fleet icon to select it. double tap to zoom to it.
  • changing arcs in shipyard more predictable. left click and hold to allow selecting of the arc to move it. Arc should not change without at least a half second hold. or enable the options setting to only move arcs when holding the alt key.
  • ships with experience can fire at targets of opportunity and will target more worthwhile ship parts.
  • save games will remember last camera position.
  • more screens with buttons to send troops.
  • AI and player will fire and engage targets where non aggression or alliance treaties do not exist.
  • Governors are better at governing.
  • Sorts are remembered and saved with save games.
  • Real Lights option enabled and toggled via F5
  • open bit bucket issue tracker with F6.
  • Many fixes to weapon effects and abilities.
  • Setting a colony to military will send idle troops to defend planets.

Performance increases.

  • more multi threading.
  • AI ship count limiter
  • allows the game to have more ships for the AI and adjust the ship performance load for your system.

AI improvements

  • AI will chose techs by what it needs and will choose ship techs that it can use and give it the best ship.
  • AI will manage its troops better.
  • AI will use more diverse fleets.
  • AI can use carrier designs.
  • AI will use troop carrier designs.
  • Fighters will return to carrier when out of ammo.
  • Fighters will more effectively return to carrier when warping.
  • Fleets will stay together when formation warping.
  • AI can build defensive platforms and star bases and will do so taking into account defensive needs.
  • ship sensors effect target picking radius
  • fighters use carrier sensor range
  • AI will better manage its economy.
  • AI fleets will be more formidable.
  • Freighters will deliver goods and population smarter.

many mod only additions

  • mods can run entirely from the mod directory.
  • Currently only McShooterz StarTrek:Shattered Alliance fully utilizes changes to the mod abilities. Transporters, Racial Specific Tech, and a lot more.
  • There are numerous new mod only abilities that The Doctor has added for his work on SD-Extended mod.

More automation controls.

  • Auto Taxes
  • Auto Technology

New Espionage screen

  • more info about other empires
  • New spy code.

Testing versions can be found here:
So what is black box? its a decompiled recompiled version of stardrive. It contains fixes and enhancements to the basic game while trying to keep the game as close to vanilla as possible.

BlackBox is Coded by:

  • McShooterz
  • The Doctor
  • General Axure
  • CrunchyGremlin
  • YoyoXyz
  • fbedard
  • allium_sativum
  • Red Fox
  • Sean

And many others


  • Set your game completely back to vanilla. IE if you installed a mod revert back so that vanilla runs.
  • if you have never installed a mod you can skip the revert to vanilla section.
  • How to revert to vanilla or Nuking from orbit... Its the only way to be sure. (warning: This requires basically downloading the game from steam again):
  • go to the stardrive program folder. usually something like: Program Files(x86)\Steam\SteamApps\common\StarDrive
  • delete the "content" folder.
  • go to steam.
  • right click stardrive
  • properties.
  • find the option that lets you "verify content"
  • do that.
  • your game should be vanilla after it replaces the gigabyte of data in the content folder.
  • When installing normal mods do not overwrite content folder items with the mod files. mods content must exist all in the mod folder for it work right with blackbox. properly formatted it will. all the mods in the mod super pack are formatted this way.
  • go to the download section and download the test version.
  • extract the zip into the the game directory usually located in Program Files (x86)\Steam\SteamApps\common\StarDrive
  • Note that all current releases are self extracting executables that will default extract to the standard steam location. if you have a non standard install adjust the path shown in the exe as needed.
  • Overwrite files if asked.
  • To Uninstall follow the revert to vanilla instructions above.
    • This mod should be compatible with normal content mods but please dont install them as you would vanilla SD. The mod should run entirely out of the SD mod folder now. It just needs to be formatted to do this.
    • Most SD mods require overwriting of game files. We removed that need and not reverting to vanilla or overwriting game files with a new mod may result in inconsistent behavior. If you find a mod that doesnt run right solely from the mod folder contact us. Here:

Notice: we have the stardrive devs publicly and privately stated approval for modifying the game for educational purposes but this software is still under the steam license restrictions. Do not use this for immoral or personal financial gain, donations requests are ok but can not be demanded or required. Do not attempt to circumvent game DRM. Be reasonably respectful of the dev and the original software and steam. please read the steam EULA and understand that game modding is a common concept.

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We have been cleaning up and fixing a lot of code here.
There is still a lot of work to do and the really cool stuff is still not touched yet.

We have added a lot to the ship yard. Ease of use. information. Functionality. Mod ability.
the main menu scene in the video above is customizable via a YAML file. Location of buttons. graphic effects. textures and even those ships warping in can be customized while the game is running by modifying the main menu yaml.

Some of the features of texas that have been refined and cleaned up in Venus are here:
Texas Whats New

Some Shipyard changes in Texas.

SD TX Symmetric1

For venus we have begun cleaning up and adding to the UI. We did a lot under the hood here that you will never see but the effects of that work allows us to add some new things to venus.
Venus Whats New

Colony Screen Changes in venus

SD VN ShipPreview

In texas we did so much to the damage visuals. One of the new coders, Fat Bastard, Got the idea that the ship damage visuals could be enhanced and we went to town on that.

So as we continue to improve the readability and structure of what we have to work with we begin to get the diamond out of the rough.

Some hurdles that still cause some pain...

XNA and Sunburn. This is graphic engine core of stardrive and niether of which are still supported. More over SunBurn online is nearly entirely gone and... it has bugs.

We are trying hard to overcome these issue but they are difficult. Currently windows 7 tends to run stardrive and black box better than win10. we are hoping we can at least create a workaround.

Texas Alpha 1 Release Getting Close

Texas Alpha 1 Release Getting Close

News 4 comments

Soon it will be here... Soon. A couple of months max.

StarDrive BlackBox “Texas”

StarDrive BlackBox “Texas”

News 2 comments

We have fixed a lot of bugs and added a lot of features, maps 4x the old volume, a stable economy, new AI attack plans, less AI god sight, troop ships...

Making freighters great again.

Making freighters great again.

News 1 comment

Freighters have never been very good in sd1. they starve planets and make poor choices. We have been rebuilding them for a long time. This is their current...

Still cranking

Still cranking

News 2 comments

Bigger maps. Path finding. Stuff. Still working on freighter usage

Add file RSS Files
Stardrive BlackBox Venus Test

Stardrive BlackBox Venus Test

Patch 8 comments

Venus test builds. A lot of new user experience features have been put in. So much under the hood. So much. Memory issues are getting better. Win7 handles...

BlackBox ModSuperPack. incompatible with venus

BlackBox ModSuperPack. incompatible with venus

Patch 25 comments

StarDrive mods for BlackBox. ComboMod. TechLevel. Babylon5, Lost Tech, STSA and more

Comments  (0 - 10 of 313)

Another donation coming in tonight, played all freaking weekend, no bugs I can see. I do love the new planet and fleet pinging on the minimap, I don't know how new that is, I haven't played since the summer. But dang, no issues, no crashes or anything bad. Just a lot of fun.

As far as race creation though, when I load a race, it keeps putting polluted planet in there, and since I am not cybernetic that really confused me when I first noticed it. I tried creating a new race, maybe it just defaults if you take rich starting planet.

I did have the AI bomb one of my barren worlds before my fleet, in system could get there to save it. Maybe there could be a different calculation, there was 20 marines on the planet, and a few space defences, didn't seem to matter.

The pirates, man I have to have fleets just patrolling empty spaces, but I upgrade my ships to include marines and EMP protection.

My medium freighters have 5 marines on board and 50 cargo along with a nice speed and turning ratio, and a shield for good measure.

I never had to do that before, it makes getting that tech more important than I used to consider it.

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CrunchyGremlin Creator

Get on our discord channel for more details on this.

Reply Good karma+1 vote

I noticed that there was another version or two after the one I am playing in this campaign, one thing I am noticing that the AI max population on their planets keeps going down. This is happening early in the campaign, so not due to any tech, but there is no AI world I have seen with a map pop of more than 10.4 or so, this includes their starter worlds. Does the AI just constantly get hit by asteroids or something? I can see the whole map now, and have taken over several capital worlds, and just 10.4

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CrunchyGremlin Creator

you are talking about the visibility?
yeah.. i think you need scout modules and sensor platforms for this.
there was a big push to reduce the sensor range on platforms which caused a whole lot of code changes. Which was in the end a positive thing.

Reply Good karma+1 vote
CrunchyGremlin Creator

this has 3 major updates.
not including all the performance updates and other things.
1. remnants have been greatly expanded. they arent just your friendly neighborhood expansion block anymore. They see you.
2. pirates.
those super lame pirates from vanilla are a whole lot more interesting.
3. War with the ai. The Ai has been given a serious boost to its war ability. it will adjust its attacks and defenses as it can. They glass your worlds and take you planets and just try to smack you. sure sure its an AI. you can beat it. they play by the same rules you do.

Reply Good karma+1 vote

I did have one of those anti-matter cap ships just show up in main system to cause trouble, thankfully I had some nice planetary defences so I just starting cranking out strafing fighters en masse, it ran away when I got it's shields down after cranking out nearly 200 fighters (most of whom died). That was epic. Thanks.

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Is there a way to use this mod and retreve direct ship control feature ? I understand why it was removed but still I really enjoyed it.

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CrunchyGremlin Creator

Not until we put it back

Reply Good karma+1 vote

I have a clean install of StarDrive. I have downloaded and installed BlackBox_Venus_develop_7343.exe in the same directory as StarDrive. I am getting this error. Thank you.

(!) Exception: Failed to load game data!

Key [DisruptionBomb] was not found in Map<String,Weapon> (len=53)
Version = develop_7343
Mod = Vanilla
StarDate = NULL
Ships = NULL
Planets = NULL
Memory = 4341
XnaMemory = 0
ShipLimit = 3000

at Map`2.ThrowMapKeyNotFound(TKey key) in Utils\Map.cs:line 44
at Map`2.get_Item(TKey key) in Utils\Map.cs:line 52
at Ships.ShipModule.InstallWeapon() in Ships\ShipModule.cs:line 926
at Ships.ShipModule.SetAttributes() in Ships\ShipModule.cs:line 914
at ResourceManager.LoadShipModules() in Data\ResourceManager.cs:line 1253
at ResourceManager.LoadAllResources(ScreenManager manager, ModEntry mod) in Data\ResourceManager.cs:line 160
at ResourceManager.LoadItAll(ScreenManager manager, ModEntry mod) in Data\ResourceManager.cs:line 133
at GameLoadingScreen.LoadGameThread() in GameScreens\MainMenu\GameLoadingScreen.cs:line 121

Reply Good karma Bad karma+1 vote
CrunchyGremlin Creator

generally these are caused by a bad install folder or bad ships... kill them.
make sure you delete the game directory. redownload from steam and resinstall. if the issue remains its likely a bad ship.
kill it.
find your ship design folder in %appdata%stardive.
and remove the old designs.

Reply Good karma+1 vote
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