I'm an old-school gamer, from the ancient days (Apple IIe). I've played quite a few games over the years, including Stars!
I recently played a newer 4x game (that shall remain nameless), and it really left a bad taste in my mouth. Sure, it WAS turn-based, but it looked and played like an RTS, a genre that I despise. So I'm back playing Stars! again, to enjoy a REAL game.
I bought the retail version when it became available (from the now-defunct CompUSA), and I've played it numerous times since then. Surprisingly, I got my daughter playing it for a while, and we even had a two-player game going. She lost interest eventually, which is OK, and it's probably just as well...I knew where she was, and as soon as she trespassed in my space, I was SO going to send a special fleet her way! :)
I'm not generally a big fan of multi-player games, because they tend to either move too fast or too slow for my taste. So I've never done the Stars AutoHost thing. I'm thrilled to see them still around, though, and salute their dedication!
I just recently got the DOSBox version running on my 7/64 machine, and am looking forward to playing a game or two here and on my (much simpler to configure) XP box.
Rochndil, who will no longer be "the answer" in a day or two...