Author Topic: Current Space Sims  (Read 5239 times)

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Offline Thor

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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?
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Offline NGTM-1R

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There have been others. Nexus comes to mind.
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Offline Wobble73

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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:
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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...

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Offline TrashMan

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Well, there's Spaceforce: Rouge Universe...and there are 2-3 more game coming out...TARR and ..what were the others?
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Offline Wobble73

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Well there's that Russian game that's due out any time, "Tomorrow War"
Who is General Failure and why is he reading my hard disk?
Early bird gets the worm, but the second mouse gets the cheese
Ambition is a poor excuse for not having enough sense to be lazy.
 
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Offline Topgun

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what about the square enix one?

 

Offline Fineus

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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.

 

Offline Unknown Target

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There's Starshatter, which is kind of decent (anemic campaign though).

 

Offline Thor

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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?
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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.

 

Offline jr2

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Where is the best place to get Elite 1-3?  Are any of them free?  Abandonware?

 

Offline Wobble73

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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!
Who is General Failure and why is he reading my hard disk?
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Ambition is a poor excuse for not having enough sense to be lazy.
 
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Offline TrashMan

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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:
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Offline NGTM-1R

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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.
"Load sabot. Target Zaku, direct front!"

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Offline Wobble73

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what about the square enix one?

You mean Project Sylpheed? Will that be available on the PC or is it XBox 360 exclusive?
Who is General Failure and why is he reading my hard disk?
Early bird gets the worm, but the second mouse gets the cheese
Ambition is a poor excuse for not having enough sense to be lazy.
 
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Offline Flipside

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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.

 

Offline Nuke

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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.
« Last Edit: August 18, 2007, 06:40:39 am by Nuke »
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Offline JGZinv

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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/
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Offline Thor

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The Space Force demo was utterly unplayable.   :hopping:
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