SGJ Podcast #72: Experimental Randomness and First Impressions

What? We Had to Test Hitbox with SOMETHING, so Why Not Paragon? ;)

What? We Had to Test Hitbox with SOMETHING, so Why Not Paragon? ;)

Hey folks, welcome to this random-ass episode of the Space Game Junkie podcast! This week, Jim and I were supposed to talk about Orbiter, the realistic space/orbital flight simulator. However, since I’m mired in moving, and Jim’s internal calendar got thrown off by our Saturday podcast, we were both woooooefully unprepared for just how detailed and deep the game actually is (I so don’t have time to read the 130+ page manual right now), so we put that on the backburner and did some testing with Hitbox.tv and discussed games which left us with negative first impressions that were later turned on their ear, like Independence War 2, for example. It was a fun discussion, and I think makes for a fun podcast. :)

Now with the move coming up next week, there won’t be a podcast for the next two weeks as I have to focus on the move, packing, unpacking and all that. Once all that should be done, we’ll be returning on 9/9 with a podcast about Star Command: Revolution, which was recommended by one of our listeners. If you have a suggestion for a guest or topic for us to cover, or just wanna yell us for whatever reason, hit us up in the comments below or at hail@spacegamejunkie.com. Thanks for listening folks, and have an awesome day!

Note, Hitbox.tv seems pretty great so far for some things — such as having a much smaller delay than Twitch — but it’s YouTube upload capabilities are problematic at the moment. With that said, please enjoy the video from Hitbox directly below. Thanks! Yay, Hitbox finally uploaded it to YouTube, I just had to do it in Safari rather than Chrome. WTF? Enjoy!

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SGJ Podcast #71: Elite Clones for Your Space Trading Needs

Surprisingly Pretty

Surprisingly Pretty

Say you wanna play in the open playground that is Elite: Dangerous, but don’t want to shell out $75 for the beta version. You’re in luck, my friend, because this week Jim and I take a look at some of the open-source Elite alternatives that cost significantly less (or nothing at all) yet still scratch the same type of itch as Elite: Dangerous. These include:

  • Oolite – This free clone of the original Elite has over 200 mods one can download in the game to make it more expansive or appealing, but we found the difficulty to be a bit on the brutal side. Still a good time if you want that original Elite experience.
  • Pioneer – This free clone of Frontier: Elite II has an expansive universe and detailed gameplay, and I was quite enamored with it, at least until…
  • Paragon – This is a $15 fork of the Pioneer project, and comes with prettier graphics, more streamlined gameplay and a more alive universe. While this is the only one of the games we tested that cost moneys, we found it was worth it, as both of us (especially me) have put a good amount of time into it since purchasing it. It’s still early access, so it’s got bugs (like a sometimes-suicidal autopilot) and crashes here and there, but overall, it’s a great time.
  • First Encounters D3D – This is a free port of the third (and worst) game in the original series, Frontier: First Encounters. Since we couldn’t even get this game to run on the stream, and found it as cumbersome as the original, we skipped it, but I put it here for your reference.

It made for a fun show, especially in the surprise discovery of Paragon, which I sadly forgot about until we were rolling. ;)

As always, if you have a suggestion for a guest or a topic you’d like us to cover, hit us up below or directly at hail@spacegamejunkie.com. Also of note, the video had some issues as we were streaming, both with my audio and with the Twitch cutting out a few times. YouTube can stitch videos together, but it still might be a bit jarring, so please keep that in mind if watching the video. Thanks again!

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