Picking the origin of your interstellar civilization is one of the first things you’ll do when you start a new game of Stellaris. Each origin massively affects on the way the game is played, from gameplay to roleplay. Naturally, you’ll want the best origins are to ensure the eternal reign of your galactic empire in Stellaris.
Not everyone has the chance to choose their roots, but you do. Make the most of it, and never forget your origins as you take to the stars.
10 Best Origins in Stellaris (2022)
Before we dive into our list of the best origins in Stellaris, we want to note that the best origin really depends on your playstyle. As such, the origins we’ve selected below are not ranked in any particular order.
1. Prosperous Unification
Prosperous Unification used to be the only origin you could choose in Stellaris. Each new game started with the citizens of your homeworld uniting peacefully under a single banner. While there are many new options that are much more interesting, this origin still holds some of the greatest gameplay benefits compared to the others.
It makes your homeworld significantly more powerful than your competition, providing four extra pops, two entire districts, +15% happiness, +25% amenities, and +10% resources harvested. Additionally, the latter three benefits will last for a short (but vital) twenty years.
Having a high population of very productive citizens is immensely important for any gameplay style in Stellaris, and the unification origin makes it that much easier.
2. Shattered Ring
The shattered ring origin starts you off on a broken ring world megastructure. Ring worlds are immensely powerful in the late game and are one of the best origins for those looking to play the long con in Stellaris.
Each part of the ring can be specialized into various aspects of production, letting you cover all your needs. Shattered ring empires should invest heavily in engineering research to help them make the most of the megastructure.
This is an excellent origin if you don’t plan on expanding too heavily. Instead, just invest straight into your home location and expand across the four edges of the ring. It’s the perfect start for a peace-loving civilization.
3. Syncretic Evolution
The syncretic evolution origin is one of the most outright fun starting positions you can choose from. In this origin, your chosen species evolved alongside another species of lesser intellect, or perhaps just of lesser strength. This makes it one of the best origins in Stellaris for any authoritarian-leaning empire, thanks to added bonuses right off the bat.
If you’ve chosen authoritarian ethics, this second species will almost definitely be a slave race devoted to manual labor. This lets you balance your species traits accordingly — you can have the weaker race be in charge of leadership, while the stronger race are conscripted servants and soldiers.
An empire with more egalitarian or xenophilic ethics could instead elect to create two races that complement each other without pushing the second one into a servant class. It’s best to specialize in genetic editing ascension perks with this origin, as it gives you a lot more control over the complimentary traits of your two partner species.
4. Void Dwellers
Starting with the void dwellers’ origin makes for a very different kind of game, as you don’t have to hunt down planets to live on. You simply make them yourself.
A trade-focused empire can make huge gains with this origin, as you can stack all of your habitats into small systems that are easy to build a huge trade value on. This synergizes well with Megacorps, letting you build your habitats in locations close to neighboring empires to maximize trade.
The downside is that your species is not very good at inhabiting most planets. You’ll miss out on some of the various stories and benefits that come from colonizing naturally-occurring planets. A void dweller origin species would do best to specialize in materialism and engineering so they can construct robot helpers quickly. Food is typically a huge drawback as well, as you’ll need to construct hydroponic farms that take an entire building slot.
The scion origin places you as the vassal state of a powerful fallen empire. Fallen empires are technologically incredibly powerful, possessing buildings and ships that are beyond comprehension. At least, at the start of the game, anyway.
Playing as a vassal for one of these fallen empires means you receive gifts from your patron as a reward for your loyalty. These can include gifts of powerful fleets, or leaders that are far beyond the capabilities of your own. Plus, you automatically get a unique casus belli on all other civilizations, allowing you to dominate them on behalf of your fallen empire.
Any of these can be pushed into your federation in the event that the War in Heaven occurs, a late-game event where two of the fallen empires will go to war with each other and force each other empire to choose a side. With your side already chosen, you can help make sure your patron wins the war.
6. Clone Army
Clone army is one of the most unique origins. With this, your starting species was cloned as soldiers for a war that happened far in their past.
At first this origin is a massive setback, as you can only have 20 pops of your species per ancient cloning vat building that you have constructed on a planet. With only 5 ancient cloning vats available, this means your species comes with a hard cap of 100 population. In other words, not nearly enough to keep an interstellar empire alive in the late game. Luckily, you also eventually get the option to choose whether your empire embraces its clone soldier heritage or modifies themselves to be able to breed naturally.
If you embrace their heritage, all of your military leaders will gain the “Clone Soldier Ascendant” modifier. This makes them exceptional at all military functions. If you choose to modify them, they instead get the “Clone Soldier Descendant” modifier. This allows them to breed while still providing minor benefits for the species in combat.
Your choice will largely depend on the ethics your empire has chosen. More authoritarian or materialist empires benefit from the ascendant soldiers, as they can take other species or robots in as workers.
7. Here There Be Dragons
This origin is more story-oriented than almost any other origin in Stellaris. As such, it’s one of the best origins for those looking for a more… unique start. It only becomes accessible with the Aquatic Species DLC pack.
In this origin, you start with a semi-friendly dragon patrolling your home system. It aligns itself with your civilization, spending the early game as a large invasion deterrent. Additionally, it holds about 12K worth of fleet power all on its own.
An easy trick here is to double up this origin with the reanimator civic, allowing you to kill the dragon, scan the body to unlock the dragon-scale armor technology, and then bring the dragon back to life to serve in your fleets. Later on, provided you have a source of living metal, you can also spawn more young dragons to join your fleets.
Necrophage was introduced with the Necroids Species DLC pack and perfectly encapsulates a very gothic, eerie feeling for your empire. A necrophagic race is unable to reproduce on its own, instead electing to raise the dead to repopulate themselves.
They can raise the dead of other species, encouraging you to play in a very warlike fashion. It pairs very well with the Nihilistic Acquisition ascension perk, allowing you to abduct pops from their own worlds and resettle them on your own. Armies of the dead will defend your worlds, and they are incredibly tough to take down with their very high damage and total immunity to morale damage.
In many ways, Necrophage is a more aggressive version of the syncretic evolution start, as you’re still able to build a secondary, “prepatent” slave species. Unlike syncretic evolution, though, there is no “nice” way to play this origin, as you cannot select it if you have any level of xenophile selected in your ethics.
9. Calamitous Birth
Calamitous birth can be a very fun way to roleplay as a lithoid race. With this origin, your starting planet has some massive bonuses to it, as the crater that brought you into existence can be mined for resources.
You have access to meteors that can replace your colonizer ships, and they allow for very rapid proliferation across numerous worlds. They travel much quicker through subspace than an average colonization ship.
However, there is the downside that they cause immense damage to the planet when they first collide with it. Thankfully, you can excavate lithoid from the hole to grow your pop rapidly to counteract this. With their massive bonus to habitability, the damage you do to the planet doesn’t matter much in the long run.
Hegemon is by far the best origin in Stellaris thanks to how powerful and optimized it is. In this hegemony, you are at the top of a powerful federation right off the bat, with two other empires held under your sway.
These empires replace the habitable worlds that would usually spawn in systems close to your home world, but they can be much better assets than simple planets would be. As the president of a hegemony, your federation members aren’t allowed to leave without declaring a war of secession. It’s important to keep track of how strong your dependents are to ensure they don’t get too far ahead of you militarily.
Note that this origin won’t allow you to select egalitarian ethics or any xenophobic ethics. Your empire is too heavily integrated with your neighbors — necessary for keeping them sufficiently dominated.
Join the High Ground
The numerous origins in Stellaris let you choose from a wide range of sci-fi adventures to explore from any kind of morality viewpoint. The best part of Stellaris is the diverse number of settings you can play through for epic amounts of time. If you think another origin deserves to be on our list of the best origins in Stellaris, let us know in the comments below. If you want to see more Stellaris content, subscribe to the High Ground and stay tuned for the latest gaming news and guides.