A Great Time for Space Games – Daily Dispatch for 10/16/18
We’re really living in another golden age of space gaming. When we have, within months of each other, games like Helium Rain (I almost typed Helium Tain, and of course immediately thought of this guy), Objects in Space, X4 Foundations and so many others. Not just focused space games, but these big sandboxes that take clearly more development time and effort, yet we’re spoiled for choice of them! I thought of this while playing both Helium Rain and Objects in Space recently. A few short years ago, these games would just be dreams of space gamers forced to play another round of Freelancer or hoping for another X game, and that’s it. It’s just such an amazing time to be a fan of space games. I’m a bit verklempt about it, honestly.
Helium Rain is finally out of early access y’all, and it’s fantastic. As much as I’ve enjoyed the X games, I’ve always felt like they’re business simulations wherein a spaceship just happens to be your office. In Helium Rain, I feel like an actual spaceship captain because the ships MATTER (not that they don’t in the X games, but I submit they matter far more here). I also feel the economy is both better explained and better manipulated here than in just about any economic-focused space game before it. It also has a very accessible tutorial to help even the newest pilots ease their way into this busy universe. This game gets so much right it’s silly, from the interface to the flight to the missions to the economy. The ONLY thing it’s missing is Freelancer-style ship chatter. Guys, at $15, this game is the steal of the year. Seriously. I’m so excited I’m not just covering it for one week, but for two. Heck, maybe more if I feel up to it. :)
- AI War 2 launched on Steam early access yesterday.
- Dreadnought has launched out of early access.
- Pax Nova — the next 4X game by the folks behind Dawn of Andromeda — was recently announced.
- Vendetta’s Online’s latest newsletter shows off bits of their upcoming engine overhaul, and it looks kind of amazing.
- Between the Stars reached their funding goal on Kickstarter! Yay!
- No Man’s Sky has a new developer update that shows off stuff from community research and more.
- Solar Warden has a dev update about asteroids.
- Genesis: Alpha One has a lovely Facebook video showing off its beauty.
- FSX SpacePort has a very technical dev post about the progress of the game’s launch sequencer.
- Infinity Battlescape added a massive patch to go along with its beta weekend, which I sadly couldn’t attend.
- Astrela Starlight has a new patch which adds shield effects and more.
- Avorion has launched their new System Upgrades Update, which adds a new gate system to the game, permanent ship upgrades and more!
- Elite Dangerous announced the Beyond Chapter 4 beta, which will hit on 10/30. It’ll include enhanced exploration, simulation changes, new ships and more.
- Spacebourne has a new post about upcoming features, including new ships, joystick support and more. They also added a big patch with multiple-monitor options and more.
- Beat Hazard 2 got both Dutch and Hungarian translations in their latest patch. They also got a patch that fixed some crash bugs, hopefully.
- Hyperspace Delivery Service got a patch which adds more events, new features such as passengers and more.
- Galimulator has a fairly hefty patch which revamps rebellions and much more.
- Avalon: The Journey Begins has a fairly big patch which includes overhauls and fixes.
- Sila Games is having a THQ Nordic sale which of course includes both Imperium Galactica games.
- Last Encounter — which if you recall is a SUPER FUN twin stick shooter — is on a fairly deep sale, and is worth picking up.
What I’ve Been Playing
- Objects in Space – Even though I know my progress will be eventually wiped, I am having a BLAST with this one. The way the narratives of the people you meet along your travels are wonderfully woven into the gameplay, and they make for some amazing moments. I had my first torpedo attack last night after agreeing to ferry a dangerous passenger (which is all I can say really) to another system. AS SOON AS WE LEFT THE DOCK, we had incoming, and almost immediately, a torpedo was headed our way. Through a series of quick couse corrections, I was able to avoid a direct hit, rather it blew up off our aft quarter, damaging my rear and taking out my sensors. Thankfully we were close enough to the jumpgate to still dock. Once I jumped, I had to pay for a tow to the nearest station, which wasn’t cheap, but the passenger paid so much, it worked out VERY well in the end. The next amazingness was the various chats with a passenger on the way to using a jump drive for the first time (not every system is connected by jump gates, some you need your own jump drive to access). The chats with the passenger were actually quite deep, and I got a bit emotional when they finally left. Seriously, this is just great stuff.
- Din’s Legacy – I played a bit more of this, but it locked up rather quickly. Not sure it likes the new resolution of the new monitor.
That’s it for today! See y’all on the podcast tonight I hope, an I hope y’all have a lovely day!