Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Sins of a Solar Empire (Space RTS PC Game 2008)

The screenshots for this game looked pretty good since it was touted as a much faster type of Homeworld II. I became interested because it looked like the closest thing to Eve-Online, but on a larger scope in terms of control.

Story
The intro story was average, but there wasn’t a one player campaign mode, so the story became pointless. You have 3 playable factions, each with different looking ships, powers, etc.

Cinematics
There wasn’t a true CG intro so I can’t say there was one.

Gameplay
The gameplay was much like any RTS in terms of resources and building up a fleet. The main difference was the fact that it seemed more like a turn-based strategy because players are only allowed to move from one planet/asteroid belt to another.

One part of the gameplay that blew ass was the factor of “pirates”. In a nutshell, even if you created a game with only one enemy, pirates would have a base and control one planet within the solar system. They planned timed raids on whomever was “worth” more in bounty. So, if I put a bounty on my enemy, the pirates would raid that person's base. Crap thing was that most of the time the pirate base would be located in the center of the map, meaning that I would not be allowed to settle in systems that could be in the “route” of a pirate raid. They would attack the first faction they came across, even if they were worth less in bounty. It was such a bitch to stay on top of upping the bounty on your opponent. Did I also mention that the pirates have hella powerful ships and make multiple invasions per hour?

The rest of the gameplay was fairly direct with resource allocation and the building up of defenses and attack fleets. But something about the whole “planet” format of things made it less fun than a real RTS.

Controls
The controls were nice. You could zoom in/out very easily and there were a lot of convenient hotkeys.

Graphics
The visuals were fair, but if you got in very close, you would notice that the turrets didn't actually move. That seemed very tacky, but that’s just me. The rest of the visuals had to be turned down because of my lappy's specs.

Overall
I’m sure some people will love this game, but it’s just not for me. Even though I later found out how to make a custom map without pirates in it, fighting an opponent and taking over planets and asteroids was not very appealing. I’m sure Homeworld II fans would love it though. It certainly has a very large scope in terms of fleet sizes, just like Supreme Commander.
Rating - Low