Easter eggs

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This article is timeless and should be accurate for any version of the game.
You are a player, are you not? - Enigmatic Observers

Easter eggs are inside jokes and references to popular culture, included for the player's amusement. This is a non-exhaustive list of Easter eggs present in Stellaris.

Sol system[edit]

If the player does not select Sol as their starting system it can be discovered in one of the following states.

Late Medieval Age
Humans are xenophobe, spiritualist and authoritarian and have primitive armies made up of feudal levies.
Machine Age
Humans are materialist and fanatic militarist and have the industrial armies Nazi Germany, USSR, US, UK and Imperial Japan.
Present Day
Humans are xenophile and fanatic egalitarian and have the post-atomic armies of US, China, Russia and European Union. ISS II orbits Earth. If they reach space age they will become the United Nations of Earth.
Nuclear Wasteland
Humanity has wiped itself out in a nuclear war and Earth is a tomb world. The planet is inhabited by pre-sentient cockroaches. At least they make a good species for uplift.

System names[edit]

Amlitzer system
Reference to the battle in the Amlitzer system in the Legends of the Galactic Heroes
Antares system
Reference to the Antares system from which the Antarans launch their attacks in Master of Orion 2: Battle at Antares
Arrakis system
Reference to the arid planet in Dune's saga
Astarte system
Reference to the battle in the Astarte system in the Legends of the Galactic Heroes. Also a reference to the Adeptus Astares (Space Marines) from Warhammer 40k.
Blorg's Bane
Reference to the Blorg, the species played in the pre-release Stellaris stream
Belgium System
Reference to a running joke of fans of strategy Youtuber Quill18, or possibly The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy
Betelgeuse System
Reference to the home system of Ford Prefect and Zaphod Beeblebrox from The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. Also a real system.
Cknoor system
Reference to the nickname of Anders "cKnoor" Carlsson, Streaming Producer at Paradox.
Epsilon Eridani

Possible reference to a Human stronghold system - home to the fortress world Reach - in the Halo series. Also a real-world system only 10LY from us, so may not actually be a deliberate easter egg at all.

Gamma Draconis system
Reference to Freespace 2 system of the same name, whose star was destroyed by the Shivans - but also one of the real star names present in the game.
Giedi system
Reference to the homeworld of House Harkonnen in Dune's saga. If one colonizes, the default name is Giedi Prime.
Heaven's Gate
Reference to Heaven's Gate, an American UFO religious millenarian group.
Higashik-Ata
Reference to Part 4 of JoJo's Bizarre Adventure, Diamond is Unbreakable; protagonist's last name.
Jabba system
Reference to Jabba the Hutt in Star Wars.
Kazoo system
Reference to the kazoo of Cknoor, as seen in the pre-release stream.
Kuma system
Reference to the nickname of Björn "Kuma-kun" Iversen, Audio Director at Paradox.
Lando system
Reference to "Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back" (although Lando's not a system, he's a man).
Mar-Adetta system
Reference to the Battle of Marr-Adetta in "Legend of the Galactic Heroes".
Manward system
Reference to the Game Director of Stellaris, Martin Anward.
Terror of the Tide system
A possible randomly generated name for an Ocean World species, also generates the world name Nazja. Reference to the Terror of the Tides campaign in Warcraft III: the Frozen Throne. Nazja is also the language of the ocean-dwelling Naga race present in said campaign.
Olimar system
Reference to the protagonist of Pikmin.
Omicron Persei
Though it is a real star system it is likely also a reference to "Futurama" where the overlord Lrrr of the Omicronians lives on Omicron Persei VIII. If the system is big enough in Stellaris, there might just be an Omicron Persei VIII.
Polgara system
Reference to the sorceress Polgara of the Belgariad series.
Rantemario system
Another reference to a star system in the Legends of the Galactic Heroes.
Sheliak system
Reference to a species of the same name in the Star Trek: The Next Generation.
Tantanga system
Reference to the alien invader from Super Mario Land.
Targon system
Reference to Mount Targon from the League of Legends lore.
Tau Ceti system
A real star system, however it has been referenced in numerous books and shows, the most well known likely Star Trek.
Ulm System
Reference to a small German one province minor in the Europa Universalis series, another grand strategy by Paradox.
Trappist system
Reference to the TRAPPIST-1 solar system, which was discovered to have three exoplanets in 2015. In 2017, it was announced that four more exoplanets had been detected. The Trappist system is a special setup that always has an m-class star, a molten world, a barren world, a toxic world, a desert world, a continental world, an arctic world, and a frozen world.

Planet names[edit]

Dune (desert world)
Another name for Arrakis from Frank Herbert's Dune saga.
Kipling (jungle world)
Reference to Rudyard Kipling, an author famous for The Jungle Book.
R'lyeh (ocean world)
Reference to the sunken city from the Cthulhu Mythos by H.P. Lovecraft.
Dagon (ocean world)
Reference to fish nicolas cage from a short story by H.P. Lovecraft.
Walled Garden (gaia world)
Translation of Rannoch, the Quarian homeworld's name from Khelish, their language, in Mass Effect.
Melpomenia
Reference to one of the Spatian's worlds in Isaac Asimov's Foundation Cycle.
Solaria
Reference to Isaac Asimov's Foundation series.

Asteroids[edit]

1337- prefix
An asteroid may get the random name 1337, which means "Leet" in leetspeak.
AT-, R2-, C- prefixes, and -AT, -ST, -D2, -3PO suffixes
All references to Star Wars.
THX- prefix and -1138 suffix
Reference to George Lucas' first movie, THX-1138. This name would appear several times in other movies made by Lucas, usually in the background or as subtle references in dialogue.
HAL- prefix and -9000 suffix
Reference to HAL in "2001: A Space Odyssey"
TLDR- prefix
Relatively common internet slang; stands for "Too Long, Didn't Read".
UL1M- prefix
Might be a reference to the EU4 state of Ulm.
OD1N- prefix
Odin, of Norse Mythology.
VIR- prefix
Likely a nod to the tutorial AI, VIR, and possibly Vir Cotto of Babylon 5.
WPR- prefix
Possible reference to WOPR, the military supercomputer antagonist of the 1983 film WarGames.

Ship names[edit]

Enterprise (battleship)
Reference to Star Trek.
Firefly (corvette)
Reference to Firefly, the main ship's class.
Greased Lightning (corvette)
Reference to the cult movie Grease.
Serenity (colonizer)
Reference to Firefly, the main ship's name.
Thunder Child (destroyer)
Reference to War of the Worlds, the Royal Navy warship that sacrificed itself to protect refugees from the Tripods.
Tycho, Durandal, Leela (pirate ship names)
Reference to Marathon, the eponymous colony ship's three shipboard AIs.
Oh, That's a Pirate! (pirate ship names)
Reference to a video game in Part 3 of JoJo's Bizarre Adventure.

Achievements[edit]

Clever girl
For uplifting a pre-sentient species: a reference to a famous line in Jurassic Park.
Domo Arigato
For having a robot Pop: Reference to the 80's song Domo Arigato Mr. Roboto.
Power Overwhelming
For having 5000 Energy Credits: it's the famous power cheat code from StarCraft.
Faster, Stronger, Better
For "Genetic Tailoring" technology: Reference to Daft Punk's song Harder, Better, Faster Stronger and Interstella 5555 - this song was played while they genetically tailored the main characters.
May also refer to the robot taunt from Unreal Tournament 2004 Faster, Stronger, Better - though that could be also an easter egg to the song.

Additionally, this could be a reference to a line from the series 'Six Million Dollar Man' that ran from 1974 to 1978, though with a slight variation of the word order.

Voight-Kampff
For detecting synthetic infiltrators: The original Voight-Kampff machine is from Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep, and was made to detect runaway androids.
Break on Through
For one rare technology: Possible reference on The Door's song Break On Through (To the Other Side)
...To the other side
For 15 rare technology: Possible reference on The Door's song Break On Through (To the Other Side)
Building Better Worlds
For terraforming a planet: Reference to the Weyland Yutani company motto from Aliens which specialized in terraforming and space exploration.
Last, Best Hope
Lead the non-aligned powers to victory against an awakened empire: Reference to the opening of Babylon 5, where it was repeatedly said that the station was the last, best hope for peace, and formed a league of worlds against the fallen empires of Vorlons and Shadows. Possibly also a reference to "Star Trek VI: the Undiscovered Country," in which a character describes the leader of a foreign power, who had been assassinated on the eve of a major peace accord, as "the last, best hope for peace in the universe."
Suffer not the Alien
For purging all other sentient species in the galaxy: Reference to the motto of Deathwatch who excels in fighting xeno threat for Imperium of Man in Warhammer 40,000 "Suffer Not The Alien to Live".
Payback
For infiltrating the homeworld of pre-FTL reptilians as a humanoid species: Reference to the famous conspiracy theory of Earth being infiltrated by reptilians.
The achievement picture is an inverted version of the poster from TV-series "V", in which a reptilian species invades earth.
Then Virgil, Now Beatrice
For returning a long-dead species to life: Reference to Dante's Divine Comedy.
Battle Thralls
For having three vassals: Reference to the Ur-Quan Masters from Star Control.
Outside Context
Reference to the Iain M. Banks book Excession. The author coined the term "Outside Context Problem" to indicate a surprising and unexpected situation, such as an invasion by massively superior alien force occuring in the middle of World War 2. The Unbidden and Prethoryn Swarm are also perfect examples of Outside Context Problems.

Random events[edit]

Comet sighted
Reference to the infamous event in many Paradox games
Anti-Alien Task Force
Reference to the XCOM and UFO series
Rogue Agent
Reference to James Cameron's Avatar
The Tree
Reference to the iconic scene from The Fountain
A Species of Ice and Ice
Reference to A Song of Ice and Fire
Improbable Ceramics
Reference to Russell's teapot, a philosophical analogy.
Glancing Hit
Reference to Mass Effect 2, the dialogue about Sir Isaac Newton and the dangers of kinetic weapons.

Messages[edit]

"The galaxy is dark and full of terrors"
Reference to the famous line from "Game of Thrones".
"Alert all commands. Deploy the fleet."
Reference to a line in Star Wars Episode V.
"The spice must flow."
Reference to Dune.
"We are the [Hive Mind AI empire]. Lower your shields and surrender your ships."
Reference to the Borg from Star Trek.
"We will add the biological and technological distinctiveness of our vassals to our own. Their cultures will adapt to service us. Resistance is futile"
Reference to the Borg from Star Trek.
"The [Evangelizing Zealots ruler] Protects."
Reference to Warhammer 40k.
"Some species are more equal than others."
Reference to George Orwell's Animal Farm.
Do you think that is air you're breathing now?"
Reference to The Matrix
"You may be wondering about the meaning of the mural behind us. That's a very good question with a very interesting answer! The price for the answer is 15 quadrillion Credits."
Reference to Star Control
"This war will bring about an era of peace, justice, morality, culture, sport, family life, and the obliteration of all other life forms."
Reference to The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy
"Please notice me senpai."
Reference to Japanese anime
"Soon, communications from all your vessels will be blocked. None of you are free of sin."
Reference to the Weird Twitter account @dril.

Enigmatic Observers[edit]

The Enigmatic Observers have a tendency to lean against the fourth wall in their dialogue.

"All the world's a stage, and all the species are merely players. You are a player, are you not?"
neutral greeting and a reference to a William Shakespeare quote.
"Don't break the fourth wall, you clever child you."
neutral greeting
"You have ceased to amuse. Your little game will soon be over."
war greeting

The Shroud[edit]

Naturally, the Shroud and psionic ascension line is full of pop-culture references, including quotes such as;

Do you think that is air you're breathing now?
A possible line when reaching into the Shroud, from The Matrix
Do you hear the voices too?
Another possible line when reaching into the Shroud, from Chaos Space Marines in Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War
What senses do we lack that we cannot see and cannot hear another world all around us?
From the Orange Catholic Bible, also used in Dune.
Horror... horror has a face.
Quote from Apocalypse Now.

Armies[edit]

Xenomorph armies
Reference to the Alien franchise
Gene warrior armies
Reference to the space marines from Warhammer 40,000
Clone commandos attachment
Reference to Star Wars: Republic Commando
Commissar squads attachment
Reference to commissars from Warhammer 40,000

Species[edit]

Second and fifth humanoid species
Reference to the Klingons and the Vulcans from Star Trek
Neo-Chimp
Reference to the Planet of the Apes
The Prethoryn Scourge
Reference to the Tyranids from Warhammer 40k
The Unbidden
Reference to the Chaos Daemons from Warhammer 40k
Admiral Chirpy (species)
Reference to the advisor of Cities:Skylines

Buildings[edit]

Ministry of Benevolence
Reference to George Orwell's Nineteen Eighty-Four
Tomb World Vaults
Reference to the Fallout series

Other[edit]

Artisan Troupe Enclaves
Artisan Troupe newsletters may allude to an experimental 'scentilus rift' technology. This is a reference to the 'oculus rift' virtual reality headset.
Proles (Utopia trait)
Reference to George Orwell's Nineteen Eighty-Four.
Crystalline Entities are Unbreakable (special project)
Reference to Part 4 of JoJo's Bizarre Adventure, Diamond is Unbreakable.
Despicable Neutrals (placeholder personality)
Reference to the people of the Neutral Planet in Futurama.
Citizen Republic (government)
Reference to Starship Troopers
Chinorr Stellar Union (Preset Empire)
A reference, albeit misspelled, to Paradox Studio's stream producer
Droid (the second tier of Robot)
Reference to Star Wars, in which all robots are referred to by this term (a contraction of "android")
Mario and Luigi (the first two names in the Italian section of Human.txt)
Reference to the main protagonists of Nintendo's flagship franchise
VIR (tutorial advisor)
Click the portrait repeatedly for some funny comments; also a reference to classic Warcraft/Blizzard games where units would have silly responses if clicked on multiple times in rapid succession. VIR's name is possibly a reference to Vir Cotto from Babylon 5.
Nimkip event
Reference to Pikmin, a video game developed by Nintendo.
Subdermal Stimulation Tech
The description for Subdermal Stimulation Tech's research card, "Where we're going, we won't need skin to feel," is a reference to the sci-fi horror film 'Event Horizon.' In a memorable scene from the Event Horizon film, one of the main characters is discovered to have gouged his own eyes out after being driven insane by cosmic influences, declaring "Where we're going, we won't need eyes to see."
Synth (the third tier of Robot)
The term "Synth" is used across many franchises - namely Fallout, Alien and Half Life 2 - to describe robots that closely resemble a living counterpart in appearance and behaviour. In Fallout, the most advanced and human-like robots are referred to by this term in Fallout (a contraction of "synthetic person"). In Half Life 2, the Combine's cyborgs are referred to as synths by fans (Although no one is heard saying the word "synth" and they are called by their given names; i.e. Strider, Gunship), in Ridley Scott's Alien franchise, 'synth' is a nickname sometimes given to androids.
Blorg Commonality
A pre-made playable empire that may appear in new games. Based on the Blorg species created during the Stellaris pre-release stream series.
Commonwealth of Man
Could be a spoof on StarCraft's Confederacy and Warhammer 40,000's Imperium of Man, as they share many traits: Military dictatorship, Xenophobia, Fanatic militarist, Laser weapons, travelling through Subspace Wormholes. Even the pre-stories of the Confederation and the Commonwealth are similar: both travelled with Colony Ships to a great distance and lost contact with Earth.
The asteroid Hive
Possibly a reference to the entities in Bruce Sterling's short story Swarm
The Infinite Calibrator (Empire modifier gained from Curators)
Description mentions crew member assigned to constantly making calibrations of a ship's gun. Reference to squad member Garrus Vakarian from Mass Effect, who is constantly calibrating weapons whenever spoken to on the ship.
The Infinity Sphere & Gargantua
Reference to Interstellar (film)
Zro
The provided description of Zro as a highly addictive substance that enhances Psi abilities very closely resembles the description of 'Melange' spice from the "Dune" franchise. Could also be a reference to Element Zero from the Mass Effect.
Game concepts
Governance EmpireGovernment typesPoliciesEdictsLeaderFactionsPopulation
Exploration ExplorationMapSpeciesAnomalyEventsFTLFallen empirePre-FTL speciesSpaceborne aliens
Colonization ColonizationCelestial bodyEconomyBuildingsTechnologyConstructionSpaceportFleet
Diplomacy DiplomacyTradeSubject empireAlliances and federationsAI personalities
Warfare WarfareSpace warfareLand warfareOrbital bombardmentMilitary stationShip designer
Others EthosTraitsTerraformingGenetic modificationSlaveryCrisisPreset empiresEaster eggs