I also stumbled upon Ai War through steam. I've always enjoyed space movies / games, even though I hadn't seen / played many. searching a bit for strategy games I found a game called AI war. Back then I was in my ''must buy all steam games'' period, so even though I thought it looked like crap and would probably be a waste of my money (my apologies for judging and jumping to conclusions so quickly), I bought it anyways. The full set, right away. That was in the early 4.0 days. I installed it right away (even though I had about 200 other steam games to try out, so apparently I was interested) and I played the tutorial. I was amazed right away. I looked a bit at my options and possibilities and realized that this was going to be a massive game, far more complex and strategically challenging than i had ever played (or imagined). I managed to finish the intermediate tutorial (even though I almost lost) and then it was time to actually play the real game.
In a lot of games I've bought I usually just play the tutorial, after which I 'save the game for later'. So far it never has been 'later' lol. But AI war was different. I was hooked on it after the tutorial. and then I got overwhelmed by the amount of options in the lobby lol. I think i spend 2 hours creating my first game, but I enjoyed doing so.
and well, more than 500 hours of playtime and countless more mistakes later here I am, finally considering myself an experienced player ^^
I had honestly never thought this game would be so good and addictive. I still regret not having been able to see this game develop from the beginning, because I was defenitely already interested in these kind of games (even though Ai war is one of a kind really)