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Off-Topic Discussion => Gaming Discussion => Topic started by: Thor on August 15, 2007, 12:35:49 am

Title: Current Space Sims
Post by: Thor on August 15, 2007, 12:35:49 am
Ok, here is a question thats bound to get some people going.  We all agree that Freespace 2 is the last great space sim.  Freelancer was the last one by a major studio.  since then, what have we gotten?  We do fine work here, but the only new games being released onto store shelves are average at best.  here's the question.

What should we do, do we buy the mediocre games in hopes that someone will see there's profit to be had and maybe make a great one, or do we avoid them, till someone either sees that we need a great game to bring back the money or they stop trying altogether?

after reading the recent most  pc gamer, this question has been pestering me.  What do you think?
Title: Re: Current Space Sims
Post by: NGTM-1R on August 15, 2007, 12:53:10 am
There have been others. Nexus comes to mind.
Title: Re: Current Space Sims
Post by: Wobble73 on August 15, 2007, 06:12:44 am
I'd say keep buying the mediocre ones, that way you may just come across a little gem of a game that you can tell all your friends about, get on the forums and let people know what you think. Then they will go out and buy the game and then tell their friends etc. Before you know it they will have a hit on their hands and other developers will sit up and take notice and maybe, just maybe, bring out their own uber space sim!

 :cool:
Title: Re: Current Space Sims
Post by: -Joshua- on August 15, 2007, 06:43:35 am
I find Darkstar One a pretty good one. I also know X2: The threat (Wich wasn't particuraly great, untill I found out about the community and scripting system) and X3: Reunion (wich is a pretty good game, and is totally awesome thanks to all the community plug-ins and add-ons)

basicly, indeed, the space sim genre is dead... and the only one who can revive it is the one who made it in the first place. David Braben. If he releases Elite 4...

Some sort of holy music (tm)
Title: Re: Current Space Sims
Post by: TrashMan on August 15, 2007, 08:58:45 am
Well, there's Spaceforce: Rouge Universe...and there are 2-3 more game coming out...TARR and ..what were the others?
Title: Re: Current Space Sims
Post by: Wobble73 on August 15, 2007, 09:37:01 am
Well there's that Russian game that's due out any time, "Tomorrow War"
Title: Re: Current Space Sims
Post by: Topgun on August 15, 2007, 09:55:23 am
what about the square enix one?
Title: Re: Current Space Sims
Post by: Fineus on August 15, 2007, 11:43:55 am
I think for the time being that graphics are no longer an issue in space sims. It'd take a pretty poor studio to put together an ugly space sim these days...

But more than graphics I think plot and gameplay - two things that should go hand in hand - really need to be worked on. The Star Wars set of games partly owe their success to a very sturdy universe upon which they're based, they're also generally quite fun to play. Freelancer (for me at least) had a plot but lacked the gameplay side of things, the control seemed wrong and I was hoping for a more realistic approach to the graphics, rather than the cartoon feel that we were given (X3 has a fantastic set of graphics on the other hand, but just doesn't quite hold my interest).

Various titles come to the space sim genre and some of them are well thought out - others less so. It's been some time since a good balance was achieved between graphics, plot, gameplay and so on. At the end of the day, there's a finite amount that you average arcade space sim can offer (fly about in space, shoot stuff, marvel at the graphics) so they really need to pull it together for it to work well. FreeSpace managed this, Wing Commander managed this (although graphically my interest only peaked around the Wing Commander Prophecy era).

All in all, we'll see I suppose! There are a number of avenues a space sim could take - from epic Battle of Endor type stuff at every turn to even some haunted house in space type thing where you're put into situations where you genuinely fear for the safety of your craft. As with FPSs, it all seems to be in the formula.
Title: Re: Current Space Sims
Post by: Unknown Target on August 15, 2007, 01:41:00 pm
There's Starshatter, which is kind of decent (anemic campaign though).
Title: Re: Current Space Sims
Post by: Thor on August 16, 2007, 12:42:27 am
Kal once again you say many wise things.  on a side note, another thing that i read in the same pc gamer made me smile.  He who shall not be named is no longer making pc games, and is going to focus on making Xbox 360 owners cry..... i mean make games for them.  Heck, simply with him leaving the pc the average quality of games just went up a few points.  hopefully the next guy who takes up his well intentioned renegade developer chalice will posses the drive to make a great game as well. 

more back on topic, i think that we've progressed technologically enough to support BoE situations, and generally more intense combat environments.  the Space sim basically needs a game like Half Life.  before half life, FPS's where basically all the same.  you shot at things that kept coming at you.  The Space Sim is essentially in a rut.  you always do the same things.  i think half the games recently released follow the Privateer route...Freelancer, the X series, Darkstar One, etc.   The other half follow the Wing Commander route...Freespace, X-Wing/Tie Fighter, Starshatter, Tachyon, etc.  The only real sub genre to them seems to be I-War, namely cause of its newtonian physics, but otherwise is like Privateer. 

So, what can be done to break the mold?  I personally really want to play a game that essentially is Grand Theft Starship.  make it a seamless world with a great plot and controls that work well in flight and on ground... thus far Breed, Halo and Unreal tournament are the closest we get, and none of them do the space sim part well. 

any other great ideas?
Title: Re: Current Space Sims
Post by: -Joshua- on August 16, 2007, 03:09:00 am
Ehrm, gazollionare deluxe? okay, thats a real old trading game, but it is still fun to play.

Quote
So, what can be done to break the mold?  I personally really want to play a game that essentially is Grand Theft Starship.  make it a seamless world with a great plot and controls that work well in flight and on ground... thus far Breed, Halo and Unreal tournament are the closest we get, and none of them do the space sim part well.

Elite 4.

Problem is, it isn't released yet, and it isn't going to be released any time soon, I think.

But Elite was the start... Elite 4 might just regenerate the space sim genre.
Title: Re: Current Space Sims
Post by: jr2 on August 16, 2007, 03:21:10 am
Where is the best place to get Elite 1-3?  Are any of them free?  Abandonware?
Title: Re: Current Space Sims
Post by: Wobble73 on August 16, 2007, 03:45:53 am
Where is the best place to get Elite 1-3?  Are any of them free?  Abandonware?

You can get Oolite, which is an Elite clone with slightly better graphics! Just Google it! I don't know anything about Elite 2 and 3 though!
Title: Re: Current Space Sims
Post by: TrashMan on August 16, 2007, 06:12:43 am
Quote

Kal once again you say many wise things.  on a side note, another thing that i read in the same pc gamer made me smile.  He who shall not be named is no longer making pc games, and is going to focus on making Xbox 360 owners cry..... i mean make games for them

Oh, most wonderfull news! Brothers! Let's us join in a celebration! The Dark Times are over! (for us at least ;7 )

good riddance to bad rubbish :snipe:
Title: Re: Current Space Sims
Post by: NGTM-1R on August 16, 2007, 06:52:23 am
So, what can be done to break the mold?  I personally really want to play a game that essentially is Grand Theft Starship. 

This is in some circles the name for the original Homeworld.
Title: Re: Current Space Sims
Post by: Wobble73 on August 16, 2007, 07:57:05 am
what about the square enix one?

You mean Project Sylpheed? (http://www.microsoft.com/xbox/projectsylpheed/) Will that be available on the PC or is it XBox 360 exclusive?
Title: Re: Current Space Sims
Post by: Flipside on August 17, 2007, 09:41:52 pm
I've got Rogue Universe and Genesis Rising, and they both suffer from the same problem, uber-mega graphics, and precious little else. Genesis Risising is a great idea crippled by it's own implementation. It's an RTS played much like Homeworld, your MotherShip can construct smaller ships, which are made out of harvested resources. The interesting part about this game is that you can harvest 'genes', which you place onto your organic ships to give them weapons, armor etc. If you have a lab, you can replicate genes once you harvest them.

The problem with this is that the fleet sizes are small, ridiculously so, we're talking less than 10 ships. I don't know what possessed the writers to set the limit so low, maybe it's because they push the graphics engine so hard that it was a question of compatability, I'm not sure. If that is the case, I'd have rather had less shiny graphics and the ability for larger fleets/playing areas.
Title: Re: Current Space Sims
Post by: Nuke on August 18, 2007, 06:32:14 am
oolite was probibly the best elite clone ever done. if you want the best original release theres a ready to roll version of arcelite floating around out there. frontier elite 2 and first encounters are out there but one is hard to run in windows and the other impossible. there is a hacked first encounters exe out there that fixes some of the bugs and can run under windows, i think its called jffe or something like that. theres an opengl version out there too if you can find it.

*edit*
linkky
http://www.frontierastro.co.uk/Hires/hiresfe2.html

i havent played many other space sims. the only one i saw that was any good was probibly infinity. the physics and graphics have theyre potential. imput needs work. of course it will be an mmo.

and of course if you want a real space sim theres orbiter.
Title: Re: Current Space Sims
Post by: JGZinv on August 19, 2007, 12:56:28 am
I haven't played these, but they look good and I ran across them.

Space Force
http://www.strategyinformer.com/pc/spaceforce2/downloads.html

Tarr Chronicles
http://www.strategyinformer.com/pc/tarrchronicles/
Title: Re: Current Space Sims
Post by: Thor on August 19, 2007, 08:06:22 pm
The Space Force demo was utterly unplayable.   :hopping:
Title: Re: Current Space Sims
Post by: phatosealpha on August 19, 2007, 09:38:52 pm
That's because they wanted to make it true to retail.  In that sense, they succeeded.
Title: Re: Current Space Sims
Post by: Flipside on August 19, 2007, 10:17:02 pm
IF I ever learn to write C++ it will be to write a game that can cope with two basic precepts...

1. Space is Big.
2. Space is 3 Dimensional.

SpaceForce needs a patch, and a rebalance. At the moment it's impossible to play with a wingman because any ship they attack will retaliate on you, so rather than keeping the pressure off, it actually makes things harder. Not only that, I can get used to the idea of headhunt missions where you simply kill your target and run like hell from his escort, but the fact that you can earn more money from doing two 'turn on the satellite' missions than from one 'Kill the Capital Ship with 100% accurate anti-fighter beams' is ridiculous.
Title: Re: Current Space Sims
Post by: Xelion on August 21, 2007, 01:35:16 am
I finished playing Space Interceptor (http://www.merscom.com/games/spaceinterceptor.php) (the full version courtesy of http://game.giveawayoftheday.com (http://game.giveawayoftheday.com)) recently and its a great game. The atmosphere is excellent, storylines ok but short and overall the graphics are not bad. What I really loved about the game is that it felt very surreal, one particular mission comes to mind where your in close proximity to Mars, it actually feels like your there, and very few games these days actually do that. Definitely a game worth getting a hold of to play :yes:

Here are some screens but they just don't do it justice:

(http://img512.imageshack.us/img512/8273/projectfreedomscreen1np0.jpg) (http://imageshack.us)

(http://img442.imageshack.us/img442/2909/projectfreedomscreen4ba8.jpg) (http://imageshack.us)

(http://img512.imageshack.us/img512/8531/projectfreedomscreen2bs8.th.jpg) (http://img512.imageshack.us/my.php?image=projectfreedomscreen2bs8.jpg) (http://img512.imageshack.us/img512/9549/projectfreedomscreen3yc8.th.jpg) (http://img512.imageshack.us/my.php?image=projectfreedomscreen3yc8.jpg) (http://img337.imageshack.us/img337/2114/projectfreedomscreen5ei0.th.jpg) (http://img337.imageshack.us/my.php?image=projectfreedomscreen5ei0.jpg)
Title: Re: Current Space Sims
Post by: Black Wolf on August 21, 2007, 01:46:03 am
Dude! Where did you spring from? I haven't seen you around here in yonks.
Title: Re: Current Space Sims
Post by: MetalDestroyer on August 24, 2007, 05:24:04 pm
Space Interceptor is good but not like Freespace 2 ^^.

About Space Sim we have actually :
- Independance War 2: Edge of Chaos (a pretty great game with infinite freedom, I mean the space is pretty big)
- Tachyon the Fringe
- Freelancer
- Starlancer
- X Wing Alliance
- Freespace 2
- Babylon 5 I've Found Her
- X2 the Threat (but it's more about management than combat)
- X3 Reunion (same as X2)
- Darkstar One (a crap copy of Freelancer with better graphic and lot of races)
- TARR Chronicle (why not, but the demo seems pretty boring even the game have many good idea.)
- Space Force Rogue Universe
- EVE Online

The next Space Sim to come are :
- The Tomorrow War (it seems to be a great game)
- Black Prophecy (a MMO Action Space Opera by 10tacle the creator of GTR 2)
- Dark Matter (but we don't have any news since 2 years)

Well, I think that's all.
Title: Re: Current Space Sims
Post by: Shining_Saber on August 25, 2007, 12:17:53 am
Eve online is pretty fun, if you get over the fact that you don't control your ship the same way.  But its fun to just look at some of the giant ships on that game, and sometimes jump in random systems just in time to see some big pvp battle (They look awesome, btw :))
Title: Re: Current Space Sims
Post by: Xelion on August 30, 2007, 10:56:24 am
Dude! Where did you spring from? I haven't seen you around here in yonks.
Apologies for the late reply.

It has been a while but I'm always here, I'm just lurking in the shadows (http://img103.imageshack.us/img103/3219/character0049wo8.gif) (http://imageshack.us)
Title: Re: Current Space Sims
Post by: akenbosch on August 30, 2007, 01:27:20 pm
one thing i have to point out...freespace seems to be the only space sim that uses moving heads instead of static images.
Title: Re: Current Space Sims
Post by: Jeff Vader on August 30, 2007, 01:39:33 pm
one thing i have to point out...freespace seems to be the only space sim that uses moving heads instead of static images.
What do you mean by that, dear aken? If you're referring to the head anis, you are wrong. There were animated heads in communication windows in Freelancer and DarkStar One, too. If you were talking about something else, I will be quiet.
Title: Re: Current Space Sims
Post by: Mobius on August 30, 2007, 01:55:14 pm
Don't forget Colony Wars and StarLancer.
Title: Re: Current Space Sims
Post by: akenbosch on August 30, 2007, 02:53:21 pm
current space sims=recent

recent=space interceptor/rouge universe

atleast in my mind.
Title: Re: Current Space Sims
Post by: Jeff Vader on August 30, 2007, 03:47:46 pm
Well, wouldn't Freelancer and DSO be recent/current since they were published in 2003 and 2006, respectively. At least they're more recent than FS. Or, if you start to compare the community activity, Lancer's Reactor was quite up and running the last time I checked.

If you want to be really nitpicking about the subject, we should take into concideration that none of these 3 titles is a space sim as such, due to lack of laws of physics. But let's not get into that, right?
Title: Re: Current Space Sims
Post by: Flipside on August 30, 2007, 04:09:16 pm
X3 also has animated heads and that was a 2006 release iirc.
Title: Re: Current Space Sims
Post by: Hades on August 30, 2007, 04:11:44 pm
I might buy X3.From what I have seen it is very good.
Title: Re: Current Space Sims
Post by: Flipside on August 30, 2007, 04:17:16 pm
X3 is good, but it's not really a combat simulator. You can do combat in it, but it hasn't got the 'feel' of FS2 or anything like that. In truth, the game is sort of like a massive Supply/Demand sandbox set in space.

It looks good, and, if you have a fast enough machine, it plays well, but be prepared to spend a long time working at it, it's not something you can play for 15 minutes if you're bored, you need to apply a fair bit of time to the game.

The real strength of X3 is the ability to buy and control an entire fleet of as many ships as you want that can trade or fight depending on the orders you give them, the AI is quite smart, but some degree of micro-management IS required.
Title: Re: Current Space Sims
Post by: Mustang19 on August 30, 2007, 05:57:27 pm
What do you mean by that, dear aken? If you're referring to the head anis, you are wrong. There were animated heads in communication windows in Freelancer and DarkStar One, too. If you were talking about something else, I will be quiet.

He's talking about how the pilots and Command always do this hip-hop head-bangin' thing when they talk. Most other game's "head anis" are rather simple and lifeless. FS ANIs have what seems like exaggerated head movements, which is slightly unnatural, but can be better than in StarLancer where only the mouth is moving.
Title: Re: Current Space Sims
Post by: Jeff Vader on August 31, 2007, 03:13:48 am
K. But there was some degree of nodding in the two games that I've mentioned, if I recall correctly. I do admit that they're not nearly as exaggerated as in FS, but I've seen worse.

Speaking of Freelancer, I'd want to play it again, but I'm a bit sceptical, since the last time I installed it on my laptop, the system went somewhat unstable, with for example Firefox not starting at all. Then when I booted the computer, I think it ran Chkdsk, for some reason. Oh well. Life is.
Title: Re: Current Space Sims
Post by: Wobble73 on August 31, 2007, 03:42:03 am
You guys have reminded me that I have bought the X2 The Threat and installed it, yet I have not yet really played it. Probably because I know it's gonna take up a lot of my time and effort. I did play X Beyond the Frontier, took me hours and hours to reach the final stages of that game, and as I was building up my fleet for the final sortie into enemy territory, I had a problem with my PC and had to re-format  :hopping: :mad:. Tried to play since but lost all heart. :sigh:
Title: Re: Current Space Sims
Post by: diceman111 on September 01, 2007, 09:27:45 pm
I have heard of great game called Freespace 2 SCP and its Free

Link: http://www.hard-light.net/forums/index.php

/Dice
Title: Re: Current Space Sims
Post by: Hades on September 01, 2007, 09:31:29 pm
[sarcasm]Hahahaha so funny.[/sarcasm]