Based on a co-worker's recommendation, I thought I would try playing Stellaris. It's fun, but I keep losing, even though I'm using all the strategies I learned from work:
1) If anything goes wrong, I blow up my entire fleet and try again. This mostly works, but it prints a big ugly "Game Over" sign every time, which is a bug I think. That's not how that works, you should get infinite retries.
2) Shortly after starting the game, I make sure to build one of every possible type of unit. This creates a severe mineral and energy deficit for my empire, and is a management nightmare, but I plan to make it up in volume. The expected returns don't materialize, so I randomly disassemble different units in the hope that the remainder will do better with more wood behind fewer lasers, but that doesn't help either. Afterwards I seem to always have less money than when I started, which definitely does not match my corporate experience.
3) I discovered the "sector administration" feature, which basically lets me delegate operation of my sectors to low-level middle managers who don't share my vision. They just build a bunch of similar looking boring stuff (mines, power plants, farms) instead of cool stuff. But weirdly, now my balance starts increasing! So I build a military and immediately declare war on the biggest, most powerful empire, as a "forcing function" to get my sector governors to improve. Surprisingly, the other empire fights back and my empire is almost immediately destroyed.
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